Dealing with the Long Hours: Stress Relief in Three Steps

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When you’re working a 9 to 5 job, your day usually begins when the sun is high up in the clouds and ends just before sunset. Some days, you might even be forced to leave work after dark because you’re up to the neck in backlogs and other tasks that make your long day even longer.

Time can often feel likes it’s dragging its feet in cement, even if you keep wishing it to go faster just so you can finally relieve your stress. Nowadays, it can seem as if work and stress go hand-in-hand. No matter how hard you try to make your workdays stress-free, it just doesn’t seem to work.

But maybe that’s because you’re not relieving your stress properly. Think about it—if you’re already stressed on Monday and you fail to get rid of the stress after you get home, then that will get carried over to Tuesday. Then the same thing will happen over and over until you’ve burned yourself out before the weekend arrives.

Admit it, two days just isn’t enough time to relieve the stress you’ve accumulated over the entire week. To get rid of this problem, you have to nip it in the bud. You might think that it’s not possible to relieve your stress the moment you get home from work, but you’ll never know until you try.

Step 1: Leave Your Work-related Thoughts at the Door

It’s important to set boundaries between your work and home life. The moment you enter your door, you have to break free from your duties as a professional because you no longer are, or at least, not for the time being. At home, you’re just an adult in need of a break from their responsibilities.

Of course, thinking and doing are entirely different actions. Even if you think that you’ve left behind your work-related thoughts, there might still be open lines of communication for stress to enter. That means that you have to take measures to ensure that your barrier is indestructible.

For instance, you can turn off your work phone so that no one can contact you after hours. It can also be better to switch off your email notifications or any communication platform you use for work. This way, your work won’t even have a chance to pull you back once you’ve finally got it out of your system.

Step 2: Do What Makes You Feel Happy and Relaxed

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After a long day at work, the best way to get your mind off of your responsibilities is by occupying it with activities that make you happy. Good examples of this are by watching your favorite shows, doing your hobbies, or catching up with your friends. Doing what makes you happy will release endorphins in your body, which can make you even happier.

You can also relieve your stress by taking a cold shower to cool off your head. Having an easy-to-use portable massager is perfect if you’re prone to having back and shoulder pains because you have to sit at your desk for prolonged periods. Wearing a cool eye mask can also help you get rid of eye strain because you’re constantly exposed to your computer’s and phone’s screen.

By relieving the stress of work from your body and mind, you get to prepare it for the following day. The effects of the changes you’re making may not be immediately evident, but they can benefit you in the long run. And once you form this habit, you will no longer have to suffer from carried-over stress.

Step 3: Take Care of Your Body

You only have one body and life, which means that you have to take care of it if you don’t want to lose it. Keep in mind that no amount of money is worth having if it means that you have to sacrifice your health and sanity to get it. Your safety should always be your number one priority.

Chronic stress is a silent killer because it plagues you with constant headaches, sleeping problems, and body pains. It becomes even worse if you’re trying to control the symptoms of chronic stress with pain relief medication because it might cause you to have high tolerance or overdose on pills.

However, by taking charge of your situation and cutting out the stressors from your life, you’re already making progress in leading a healthier lifestyle. Therefore, you must continue doing so by staying more active, eating more nutritious food, and getting enough sleep every day.

Once you learn how to manage your stress, going to work won’t be so hard. When you finally achieve this, you’ll realize that you’re working to live, and not living to work. Your job shouldn’t define who you are just because it’s what you do. So remember that you will always be more than your job.

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