In order to implement a strategy to manage stress you must first:
- Identify the sources
- List and prioritize them
- Identify the appropriate Stress management Tools
- Create a Stress management program
When writing this blog I looked for some simple and effective techniques that can be done in the work place, which doesn't take long and are beneficial.
Below is an article written by Camille Devost on techniques to use in the workplace. You can find the original article here:
How 5-min of self-massage can increase Productivity at work
Stress and relaxation; is it possible to have a balance between the two in the work place? Dealing with the constant pressures of deadlines and the toll it takes on the body can be draining. Spending more time at your desk may seem like the best solution but sometimes there just isn't enough time in a day to do it all. Or is there?
Dr. Joyce Brothers once said "No matter how much pressure you feel at work, if you could find ways to relax for at least five minutes every hour, you'd be more productive." How can you possibly relax at work? Self-massage! Instinctively, we do it without even understanding why. Allowing the body to hoard tension not only increases muscle pain but also waists an unbelievable amount of energy which can ultimately reduce one's focus and productivity.
Self-massage distracts or blocks the nervous system from sensing pain in a way that lessens its intensity. The psychological effects of massage are also well-known for reducing anxiety, stress, and even depression. According to Wendy Turnbull's 1994/95 article "Massage and Medicine Merging" from the Ontario Massage Therapist Association Newsletter no.8, studies have shown that a 15 minute on-the-job self-massage was not only effective on increasing mental alertness but also in solving computerized problems in half the time with 50% fewer errors.
Here are some quick self massage tips for muscle pain relief at work:
1. Scalp: If you don't mind messing up your hair, using your finger pads to massage the scalp can feel amazing. Don't forget the forehead or behind the ears.
2. Temples: Rub your fingertips in circular motions at your temples for a few seconds.
3. Eyes: Take both thumb pads and place them just below the eyebrows where they meet the bridge of the nose. Let the weight of the head sink into the thumbs for a few seconds. Then slowly glide the thumb pads along the brow bone towards the outer end of the brows. Repeat a few times.
4. Jaw: Lots of tension can accumulate in the jaw. Massaging your palms on the sides of the mouth can relieve a lot of tension.
5. Neck: Use your fingertips to massage the back of the head where it meets the neck. Then glide your fingers in circular motions downward along the spine without applying direct pressure on the spine. Bending the head forward can give you better access to those muscles.
6. Shoulders: Squeeze the shoulder muscles between your fingers and thumbs on each side. This may create some headache-like sensation. If so, squeeze until the pain diminishes and add a heat source for 10 minutes such as a hot water bottle or beanbag.
8. Feet: If you have a tennis ball that you can bring to work, place it under your feet (shoes removed) to roll on while working at the desk. This will reflexively relax the entire body.
So the next time you feel stressed out, over worked or in need of some muscle pain relief, just remember to take five. Your body, mind, and boss will thank you.
By Camille Devost