Contributed by Casey R.

Work can be a major stressor.  Our co-workers, boss, workload, the company and customers…all of these aspects of the job can stress us out.  So, what’s the best way to deal with this?  Quitting your job and telling your boss to ‘take this job and shove it’ is a fantasy to hold on to, but it isn’t practical.  Here are solutions that helped me handle two factors that cause me the greatest stress at work.

Co-workers/Boss. Maybe you have a coworker who complains about everything or consistently does not meet deadlines. I know I have dealt with all of these types; but while I was sitting their stressed out of my mind, I realized I never said a word to them.  In my particular case, I had a problem with a colleague who was always complaining; it was a habit I found to be quite distracting but I never said anything about it for a long time.  Finally I decided to confront him.  I pulled him aside, privately, and said, “I understand you might be upset at work, but I am finding it difficult to work while listening to your negative comments.” Simply dealing with this issue head on worked and he stopped this behavior. He had been completely unaware of how his behavior was affecting me.  For more tips, check out the book “Dealing with People You Can’t Stand” by Brinkman & Kirschner.  I have given it to many of my friends who have encountered co-worker stress and they love it.

Workload. You have so much to do in a very short time and are stressing about how to get it all done.  You are so stressed that you go over your to-do list in your head before bed and can’t get to sleep, leaving you tired and cranky the next day.  I find that breaking big tasks into smaller steps helps brings clarity.  If I have to get a presentation ready, I break it down into: writing the outline, researching a topic, creating the handouts, etc.  Then I break these down into smaller steps. Seeing the small steps, helps me see it is all doable.  Crossing off all these little steps, one by one, gives me the momentum to keep going.  Then I wind up excited at how great I am doing.

What stresses you out at work? How do you cope? We invite you to comment in the box below.