As a busy professional, I am aware of how work stress can interfere with every aspect of your life. Stress at work has a way of burning you out quickly because it becomes a strain on your daily life. There are ways to deal with work stress that can help make it much more manageable. I am a living example of coping with work stress and not allowing it to interfere with every other aspect of my life.
Work stress may be a question you pose regularly. The answer is in being assertive.
Being assertive is a core strategy for communication, especially in the workplace. What it means to be assertive is to adequately express yourself and your point of view while still respecting those around you. Assertive communication makes sense because it’s based on mutual respect. By being assertive, you are showing that you respect yourself as well as those you work with.
Work stress overflows when you have a passive attitude. Being passive means that you don’t address issues when they arise, and you take every step possible to avoid conflict. By being assertive, you can reduce stress and even thrive in the workplace because you are not just letting things happen around you. Instead, you are taking action by dealing with your colleagues, honestly and clearly.
To be assertive in your workplace, you are showing respect for those around you while also elevating yourself to be respected. People won’t take advantage of you. Better still, you will learn to deal with work stress better because you have complete control over your emotions. Lastly, to show assertive behavior, you are setting boundaries for those around you and not giving in to the demands that go beyond those boundaries.
There are many types of personalities in the workplace; none that clash more with others than when you exhibit passive-aggressive behavior.
Being passive-aggressive is terrible for you and damaging to any workplace relationships. You are frustrating those around you along with damaging your work ethic and relationships with colleagues. When you exhibit passive-aggressive behavior, you are denying how you feel and are shutting down instead of communicating. By refusing to discuss issues or by stubbornly procrastinating on work projects out of stubbornness, you are damaging your relationship with your superiors and your co-workers.
Being the ‘yes’ person is damaging to your career and your stress levels because you are taking on everything everyone asks you to do without considering if you can do the job. As you continually say yes to everything, your willingness to work hard will eventually take its toll. You will be stressed as deadlines loom, and you aren’t making the progress you expected. Furthermore, you will be seen in your workplace as a pushover.
As you learn to assert yourself in the workplace, you will find your management skills will improve dramatically through proper communication and work allocation.
By being assertive, you are learning to effectively communicate your needs, show respect for yourself and others as well as managing your time better. Assertiveness will help you win in all areas of your life, not just your career.
As you assert yourself, you will learn how to handle all aspects of your life with more clarity. You will face situations and be able to handle them better as you can problem-solve, tackling difficult situations.
Though you will still experience work stress, you won’t be as overwhelmed as you would be if you continued to be passive-aggressive. The more you learn to assert yourself, the better you will become at handling stress in your life.
You can quickly learn to become more confident by taking an honest look at yourself and your behavior.
How to be more assertive
Knowing your value starts by knowing what your workplace rights are. Some rights may include:
You can always call NLSA at (412)255-6700 to obtain more literature on each of these rights.
Just because you encounter disappointment in the workplace doesn’t mean that it has to be a negative thing, use it as a lesson learned and grow from it.
You aren’t responsible for other people. Therefore, it stands to reason that you cannot be responsible for their behavior, only your own.
Part of growing as a person knows when to accept that there are going to be criticisms of you and when they arise, learn to form them. The same way, accept compliments gracefully.
Be willing to understand that sometimes you won’t have an answer quickly for your boss or co-worker. If you have to ask them for more time, do it.
Know what battles you should fight and which don’t matter. Learn how to pick your battles wisely and understand that the ones you choose are ones worth fighting for. Address all issues that arise with clarity and directness. You don’t want to make your co-workers guess what the problems are, be direct, and explain the issues.
Work stress is something that most are plagued with every single day. When you find that you are starting to feel the burden of work, try using assertiveness as a way to deal with work stress. The more you assert yourself, the better you will be at your overall life.
Suja Johnkutty: Dedicated physician, mom, and visionary. If I could live in a Relaxation Retreat half the year, I would. From an overwhelmed state, I realized to embrace the solace that comes from meditation, mindfulness, and the love of comforts at home after a busy day. Let me share them with you in BetterRelaxation.com to amplify your self-care and enhance your vibrancy.