We all experience stress, but we don’t all process stress the same way.
Stress. It’s inevitable.
Some are better than others at dealing with stress. It doesn’t have to be complicated and it can be learned by ANYONE.
Having an overwhelming response to stress at work is not only detrimental to your productivity, but it is also hurts your overall health because you spend a lot of time at work – 8 to 10 hours in a given day.
So, can we reduce stress at work? If so, how do we go about doing this? In short, the answer is yes, and here is a simple and effective three-step strategy to keep in your back pocket whenever you feel that workplace tension rising.
Take a four-second inhale through your nose and hold that breath in for four seconds. Then, slowly release that breath through your nose for a count of four seconds and hold that exhale for four more seconds. Repeat this multiple times until you feel yourself calming down and getting less overwhelmed.
Take breaks and move around
Taking small movement breaks throughout your day can help with a whole host of health benefits in your response to stress. By simply taking 90 seconds every hour to either walk to the other side of the building or have a quick exercise routine at your desk, you’re allowing yourself to have a better response to stress and improve your overall health and productivity.
Track Heart Rate Variability
Tracking heart rate is a great way to determine how your body is responding to stress in the moment. Take your heart rate before you go to work, take your heart rate when you initially get to work, and then take your heart rate when you feel like you are facing a stressful moment. If you combine this with the breathing, you can figure out how your body is responding to stress.
When you check your heart rate at a resting state, you have a resting heart rate. When you check your heart rate at your workplace, you see how your body responds to being at work. When you check your heart rate during a stressful moment, you can see the difference.
When you track and compare all three of these states of your heart rate, you have visibility to your heart rate variability and you can figure out more objectively whether your body is actually responding to stress or if you just perceive that it is.
By combining the tracking of your heart rate with the box breathing and moving around, you can take control over stress, which is incredibly powerful and effective.
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