Say No to Job Stress


Syed Zafar Mehdi

While stress can be a motivating factor at times, it can also hamper productivity and performance of the employees, and adversely impact their physical and mental wellbeing. With recession hanging like the sword of domiciles over employees yet again, and things like ‘layoffs’ and ‘budget cuts’ playing on their minds, the uncertainty and anxiety among the workers has also increased, leading to higher levels of job stress. Finding ways to manage stress at workplace is perhaps the biggest challenge facing employees today. The better you manage your own stress at work, more likely are you to positively influence people around you.

In a study pertaining to stress at work, Andy Ellis of Oxford College UK draws a chart to suggest how stress can adversely affect employee’s performance. He argues that initially job stress can fire up the employee to produce good results, but if the stress level goes unchecked, performance takes a nosedive and person’s health also deteriorates. Age is also an important determining factor. A University of Utah study found that as stressed workers get older, their blood pressure increases above normal levels.

Stress can have positive influence on a person, but only to a certain extent. The feeling of prejudicial treatment by the supervisor, strenuous work schedule etc are bound to compound the work-related pressures and anxieties.Michiel Kompier and Cary L. Cooper in their book Preventing Stress, Improving Productivity: European Case Studies in the Workplace state that occupational stress is a serious problem for the performance of individuals, organisations and as a consequence, for national economies.

In a lengthy study, Tom Cox, Amanda Griffiths and Eusebio Rial-González from University of Nottingham Business School call work stress a major health concern. “The strategic argument for the management of work stress, on the basis of the available scientific evidence and current legal thinking in Europe is that work stress is a current and future health and safety issue, and, as such, should be dealt with in the same logical and systematic way as other health and safety issues.”

Stress often translates into feeling of boredom, and boredom is always counter-productive at workplace. Sandi Mann of University of Central Lancashire, England, in his study says boredom is the second most commonly hidden workplace emotion, after anger, and believes modern workplaces are becoming more boring.

The case of women employees is more critical. A new research by Dr. Michelle Albert, Professor in Cardiovascular Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, has found that women with significant job stress are almost 70 percent more likely to suffer heart stroke and nearly 40 percent more likely to have other cardiovascular traumas like stroke, than women less stressed out by work.


About Zafar Mehdi
Maverick journalist, irreverent rebel, travel freak, cricket junkie, reluctant fundamentalist, student of life, dreamer, believer.

One Response to Say No to Job Stress

  1. Pingback: Job pressure killing you? Visit wellness clinics to beat stress | Subhayan's Web Log

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