Small Business Brief


10 of the Most Effective Ways to Relieve Stress in the Workplace

Over 83% of working Americans are stressed, and this stress results in $300 in lost productivity. 

This stress also causes work-related accidents, missed days of work, and unhealthy work interactions. 

But how can you de-stress in the middle of a busy workday?

We’ll show you. 

Keep reading below to learn 10 simple ways to relieve stress in the workplace. 

1. Get Rid of Interruptions 

You might not realize it, but you’re probably dealing with hundreds of interruptions at work every day. 

Things like email notifications, phone calls, messages, new deadlines, urgent projects, and pop-ins constantly demand your attention. These interruptions don’t only make you less productive, they can also make your stress levels go up. 

You might not be able to control when these interruptions happen, but you can control what you do about them. 

If you can, set aside specific times of your work day to answer emails or other messages. Make other interruptions you can’t avoid as short as possible.

You can also prioritize the interruptions. Handle the most important ones first, and put other, less urgent interruptions off until later.  

2. Take Plenty of Breaks

If we work harder and faster, we’ll finish work sooner… right?

Not quite. 

Working longer hours doesn’t equal getting more work done. All you’re doing is overloading yourself and adding more stress to the workday. 

So give yourself time to take breaks. Get up from your desk or computer and take a quick walk. Stretch. Do breathing exercises. Allow yourself to take a minute to clear your head and recharge. 

3. Set Reasonable Goals 

When you set goals that are too high, you won’t reach them. 

That becomes a problem for a number of reasons. 

First of all, you’ll excuse your failure. If the goal was too high anyway, this doesn’t seem like such a bad thing. But once you excuse your failures, you’ll start to accept your failures. After that, you’ll be expecting yourself to fail.

This’ll make you feel discouraged. You’ll have a hard time planning ahead and staying motivated. 

Learn how to set reasonable goals and then actually meet them. 

4. Take Time to Breathe

People who’re stressed forget to breathe. 

When you start to feel overwhelmed or anxious, give yourself a moment to take a few deep breaths. This can restore your balance, calm you down, and help you refocus. 

Start by taking a deep breath in through the nose. Hold the breath for five seconds, and exhale slowly. 

Do what works for you. If meditation calms you down, set aside a few minutes to close your eyes. Do certain scents calm you down? Figure out a way to bring them to work with you (you can read more here). 

5. Create a Daily Schedule 

If you don’t know what you’re doing when, you might start every workday feeling frazzled, uncertain, or already behind. Creating a daily schedule can help fix this problem. 

You know what you’ll do when you get to work, you know how much time you’ll have for each task, and you’ll know how much you’ll get done in the day. 

Don’t forget to schedule in breaks!

Do you work in an environment that changes every day? Spend the last part of your workday putting together a schedule for the next day. You can also make a schedule as soon as you get to the office in the morning. 

6. Eat Right and Sleep Right

A healthy and well-rested body can have a big impact on your stress level at work. 

Make sure you’re eating right in the office and at home. Try cutting out unnecessary sugars and adding high-protein foods to your meals. 

Schedule your evening so you’re in bed in time to get a full seven hours of sleep. This is a time to refresh and rejuvenate your body. If you don’t get enough sleep, you won’t get any of the benefits either. 

7. Don’t Doubt Yourself 

You can’t control what other people think of you. Because of this, worrying about what other people might be thinking of you will just stress you out. And the only person creating that stress is you. 

Don’t do that to yourself. 

Trust yourself and build up your own self-confidence instead of relying on approval that comes from other people. This will let you shift your focus back to your work. 

This can even help you perform better in the long run.  

8. Prioritize Your Tasks

Your workday is filled with priorities. If you attempt to focus on all these priorities at the same time, your stress will continue to build the longer it takes you to finish them. 

So set priorities. 

Work on the project that has the nearest deadline or that’s the most important first. Then move onto the project with the closest deadline after that. 

Only work on one task at a time. This will allow you to finish them faster and get them all done on time. 

9. Stop Slouching 

Your posture might not seem important, but your posture can actually make you less productive

If you notice yourself slouching at your desk, straighten up. You can even get a new chair to help with your posture if you need to. 

This small change can make you feel more organized, capable, and focused. 

10. Don’t React – Act

When things are constantly happening around you, your initial instinct might be to react. But reactions aren’t always helpful. 


Because one of those reactions is often stress. 

So instead of reacting to what’s around you, decide to act instead. Take a moment to stop before you react. Consider what’s happening and stay in control by strategizing how you’ll handle it. 

Effective Ways to Relieve Stress at Work

Stress in the workplace is a serious problem that affects the majority of working Americans. With these 10 ways to relieve stress at work, you can actually become more productive. 

That means you can both get more done in your day and do better work. 

But working from home can be a whole other story. 

Are you trying to figure out how to stay productive when you’re in the comfort of your own house? Click here to learn some tricks that’ll help you stay productive at home.