April is National Stress Awareness Month. As I tell the executives with whom I work, there’s no quick fix to beat stress. Creating a stress-busting routine is more of an individual journey, than a destination. Think of your workday as a lab and try different experiments to reduce the chaos.
To get a handle on stress, it helps to build an arsenal of tools so you can harness a little “inner chill” when you need it most.
1. Take a few deep breaths.
It’s not about a quick breath to calm you down, it’s about the science of the breath. Take deep breaths throughout the day, in through the nose, and out through the mouth. Breathing into the nostrils stimulates the pre-frontal cortex of the brain. It triggers the release of stress-reducing hormones such as dopamine and serotonin.
2. Take a break from office gossip.
Avoid the water cooler gossip factory. It’s important to cultivate healthy relationships at work, but diving in to the trashing of fellow colleagues and managers breeds negativity. It’s a time waster and induces stress.
3. Recharge with physical activity.