Work can be a stressful place no matter where you may earn your living, but those of us involved within the mortgage industry have probably dealt with more stress over the past few years than most—thanks to the housing bubble and the plethora of changes Dodd-Frank has brought. While some workplace stress is perfectly normal, excessive stress can interfere with your productivity and impact your physical and emotional health.
Some stress is a good thing, because it can motivate you and make you a stronger individual; however, your ability to deal with it can mean the difference between success and failure. Finding ways to manage your stress at work isn’t about making huge changes or rethinking career ambitions; it’s about focusing on the one thing that’s always within your control—you.
How to Reduce the Stress
1) Improve your time management and organization skills: Stress that is caused by an excessive workload can be minimized by good time management and organizational skills. One of the best things you can do is create a daily to-do list and really give all your attention to one task at a time. You should tackle the important, difficult, or unpleasant tasks earlier in the day when your energy level and ability to concentrate are at their peaks, and ask for help when you truly need it. Finally, don’t set unrealistic goals for yourself.
2) Relax and breathe deeply: Whether you are feeling overwhelmed by the amount of work you have or a co-worker or client has really irritated you, a great thing to do is relax and take a deep breath through your nose and out of your mouth. This will help calm you down and will allow you to rationalize your thoughts before doing something you regret.
3) Take breaks from your work: Spending hours upon hours in front of your computer to try to rush through an assignment as quickly as possible will only cause you to become irritated, and will usually lead to subpar work that’s filled with errors. It’s important to get away from your desk/computer every so often to let your brain relax, even if it’s for only five minutes. This will recharge your batteries, allowing you to think more clearly and concisely when doing your work.
4) Lighten up and smile more: A great stress reliever is laughter and a good smile, because it keeps you and your co-workers sane and provides a few second break from the rigors of the workplace. You have to try to make the workday as enjoyable as it can be to help reduce your stress, and a good joke or quick and friendly conversation with a co-worker is just the medicine you’re looking for—just be sure to keep it in moderation and don’t get too carried away.
5) Listen better: For those of you that have stress caused from co-workers, this tip is right up you and your fellow co-worker’s alley. You need to learn to listen to one-another and you must let go of your desires to control the other person and/or your relationship with them. Rather than getting upset when others disagree with you, listen actively and find the areas of agreement. It’s ok to be a little assertive and to stand up for yourself, but don’t be single-minded and let go of your pride when necessary.