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    Managing Job Stress - Overview

    Take care of yourself

    • Unplug. Don't let the technologies that help you do your work get in the way of your leisure time. Consider turning off cell phones or beepers when you are with family or friends. And avoid checking work email when you're not at work.
    • Be realistic. Remember that everyone has good days and bad days at work. For more information, see the topic Stop Negative Thoughts: Choosing a Healthier Way of Thinking.
    • Reward yourself. When you finish a difficult task, celebrate. Enjoy a snack at your desk, or-if your job permits-take a short walk or visit with a coworker.
    • Schedule time for fun. If you spend every second of your day getting things done, you may resent never having time for yourself. If your employer offers a flexible work schedule, use it in a way that fits your work style. Go into work earlier and take a longer break at lunch to make time for a yoga class or a walk.
    • Practice breathing and relaxation techniques. You can do these at home or in a quiet place at work. For more information, see:
      actionset.gif Stress Management: Breathing Exercises for Relaxation.
      actionset.gif Stress Management: Doing Guided Imagery to Relax.
      actionset.gif Stress Management: Doing Progressive Muscle Relaxation.

    Setting a goal to reduce stress

    First, identify what's creating stress at work. Maybe it's lack of control over your job. Or maybe it's worry about losing your job or how you are doing at work. You might feel stress because you're unable to express your thoughts and ideas to your boss and coworkers.

    Think about why you want to reduce stress at work. You might want to protect your heart and your health by reducing stress. Or maybe you simply want to enjoy your life more and not let work stress control how you feel. Your reason for wanting to change is important. If your reason comes from you-and not someone else-it will be easier for you to make a healthy change for good.

    Next, set a goal for yourself that involves reducing your stress level. Think about both a long-term and a short-term goal.

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