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Managing Job Stress - Overview

Setting a goal to reduce stress continued...

Here are a few examples:

  • Shelly's long-term goal is to reduce stress by managing her frustration over things she can't control at work. Her short-term goal is to learn to do deep breathing and relaxation exercises when she gets stressed. She'll try it the next time her boss hands her a last-minute project.
  • Jill's long-term goal is to reduce stress by speaking up at work and expressing her interests and ideas more effectively. Her short-term goal is to practice being more assertive. When she's ready, she'll contribute an idea at a department meeting.
  • Raoul's long-term goal is to reduce stress by having a better understanding of what's expected of him at work. His short-term goal is to find out how he is doing now. He plans to schedule a meeting with his boss to talk about his performance and how he can improve.
  • John's long-term goal is to reduce stress by learning to say "no" to projects he doesn't have time to handle. His short-term goal is to get organized and prioritize the projects he has now. He is going to make a list of all of his work and then prioritize the tasks that are most important.

After setting your goals, think about what might get in your way. Use a personal action plan(What is a PDF document?) to write down your goals, the possible barriers, and your ideas for getting past them. By thinking about these barriers now, you can plan ahead for how to deal with them if they happen.

Most important, make sure you get support from friends and family in your efforts to reduce job stress. If your company has an employee assistance program, you might use it to talk with a counselor. A counselor can help you set goals and provide support in dealing with setbacks.

Know when to quit

If you are truly miserable because of a stressful job, it may be time to think about changing jobs. Make sure you know whether it is you or the job that's the problem.

Before you quit, spend time thinking about other job options. Not having a job will probably also lead to stress. Getting another job before you quit is best, but sometimes that isn't possible. Decide what is less stressful for you—unemployment or being miserable in your current job. It might help to talk with a counselor about your choices.

This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: May 03, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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