Essential stress management strategies for a productive work environment

Stress management
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Stress has no definition. The very concept of stress varies from person to person. However, one thing is for sure too much stress can have harmful implications on one’s personal as well as professional life. One of the most common places for people to experience stress is their daily workplace. When battling its effects becomes important, learning office stress management techniques can help.

Office stress management techniques can be very important for helping people stay in focus and in control on hard days. While most people would love to say they enjoy their jobs and derive no stress from them whatsoever, this simply is quite often not the case in Nepal and any other parts of the world.

When stress builds up in the office, releasing it effectively is not only good for the body, but the measure could preserve or even advance a career.

So here is a list of the best office stress management techniques:

entrepreneurship in nepal. Representational image. Photo by Christian Erfurt on Unsplash
Representational image. Photo by Christian Erfurt on Unsplash

Taking a break

If stress is piling up, taking a five-minute break to regroup is always a good idea. Whether you just sit at your desk or close your eyes for a few minutes, visualise yourselves tackling your problems. This is a key step in stress management as it will help you to face various problems in the long run. Another thing you could do is get up and walk around, the result can be a calmer feeling and a mind that is more focused on the job at hand.

Thinking positive

After you get off the bed, think about all the things you can be grateful for. Thank god for what you are. Remember, you are luckier than many people around the world, who even have a hard time just to live. Also, keeping quotes, sayings and other decorators in your workplace encourages and builds confidence and gives positive influence too and helps you in stress management.

Drinking some water

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Drinking water cools down your body. Moreover, water helps control those hormones in your blood that create anxiety or anger. Water helps control blood pressure. You could even wash your face if you are feeling too bad. After all, it is a good idea to keep a water bottle on your office desk.


Some people find that exercising is the best office stress management technique. Cutting a lunch hour short to walk the stairs or just walking around the building can relieve some of the tension of the day. Plus, it is good for the body and helps get the blood flowing and the brain working.

Learning to prioritise

If you are feeling overwhelmed by everything you have to get done, keep a daily to-do list on your computer and list tasks from most to least urgent. Then, address each project one at a time, and cross it off once it is done. Breaking your workload into individual tasks makes it seem less intimidating.

Keeping posture in check

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Often when you are focusing on a stressful project at work, you unconsciously keep your shoulder, back, or neck muscles tense, which leads to pain and fatigue. If you catch yourself tensing or hunching over your computer, take a deep breath and consciously loosen each muscle in your body.

Keeping photos of loved ones

Keeping photos of your kids or significant other on your desk can be a great morale booster. If you are feeling especially stressed, look at the pictures and remind yourself of what matters most.

Eating healthy

When the afternoon slump hits, it’s so tempting to reach for that chocolate bar or sugary energy drink. But according to Livestrong.com, energy bars and drinks “can cause unwanted side effects such as irritability, anxiety, and withdrawal fatigue.” Instead, try snacking on fruits and vegetables that will give you a more natural energy boost. Bananas are particularly great for afternoon snacking.

Deep breathing, and relaxation techniques

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If stressors pile up too high, or a meeting is going out of control, working relaxation techniques into a routine before responding can result in the wished performance. Taking a deep breath before answering a complaint call, spending two minutes meditating before facing an angry boss or co-worker or even working muscles to make them relax a bit can put a person in a better position to release stress and face the day.

Sharing problems

Rather than letting stress go over and spill in the wrong place, why not put it in the right place away? Sharing one’s problems can reduce stress. One can share it with their trusted ones, close ones, and loved ones. But even that is not necessary, one can share it in their diary or notebook, or with some inanimate things such as stone, or even with a god’s photo in one’s workplace.

Organising desk

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How can a neater desk reduce stress? Well, because the source of many types of stress comes from a feeling of being out of control, of being overwhelmed. When your work area looks like a battlefield, you feel the tension growing. And when you cannot find the report you need, your stress level soars even higher. By organising your files and piles, you get a sense (perhaps mistakenly) that there is some order in all the chaos.

Listening to music

Listening to the music of one choice can soothe the mind and drastically reduce stress. Therefore, it is a good idea to get headphones (or earphones) and keep some good music on the office desktop, laptop, mobile phone or even carry an MP3 player.


One of the best ways to keep oneself in a good mood is to try to feel as if one is already in a good mood. Smiling makes one look cheerful on the outside, and if one is cheerful to others, others seem cheerful to them. Put on a smile even if you are in the toughest of situations, and the world will seem brighter and better, and it helps reduce stress.

Laughing it off

Laughter is one of the most valuable resources to help you reduce and manage stress. See a funny film or a comedy show. Remember to create time to ‘play’ and remind yourself to lighten up and not take life so seriously.

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Gyawali is the deputy director of Safety Management Division at Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal.

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