2013 feels like the year of the stressful workplace. The Everest College Third Annual Survey released last month stated that 83% of Americans feel frazzled at work. The people I know, both in my practice and in my personal life, feel added anxiety. The echoes are long and loud. People are feeling undervalued, underpaid, and underappreciated, although their workload has increased. The atmosphere in the workplace has become that much more cutthroat, and instead of a collaborative community, the workplace is becoming fraught with competition.
With more stress in the workplace, what is the fallout at home? We have to ask ourselves long and hard questions, and we have to take an honest look at what we can and cannot change. If stress is the paradigm at work, can we balance things so that our home life is fulfilling and happy? Without becoming mindful and aware that we tend to carry our anxieties out on others, stressful situations at work will bleed into stressful situations at home. If we take the time to become aware and create the intention to make our personal life special, we can create transitions for ourselves that will ease the anxiety.
The following ideas may be of help:
-Allow yourself time to decompress. Write in a journal all of the stresses you felt during the workday, put it in a drawer, and leave it at work.
-Exercise. Or walk home from work, if possible, to clear your head.
-If you have a commute via train or public transportation, learn how to meditate. It really works to ease tension.
-Have something to look forward to. Think of a joyous thing you want to do when you leave work.
-Make someone else happy. Stop thinking about yourself and your problems and connect with coworkers or friends after work.
If you start to do these simple exercises, you may find that you are able to feel happier outside of work. Counter intuitively, that may affect your disposition at work so that what appeared to be so stressful is easier to cope with.