3 Things To Try Next Time You Feel Stressed at Work
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Who hasn’t been stressed out at work? Whether it’s a big deadline, an important project, or dealing with an upset customer, there are plenty of things that can stress us out at work. But what’s that doing to your body? Cortisol, AKA the stress hormone, can have some negative effects on your body:
- Increase anxiety
- Loss of appetite
- Weight gain
Our bodies evolved to release cortisol at times when it thinks we’re in danger. It supports the fight-or-flight response, but in the workplace we don’t need to worry about running away or fighting our way out of our problems (as much as we might like to sometimes). Instead, here are three things you might want to try to make yourself feel better the next time you’re stressed at work.
Swap your snacks
Cortisol can increase the level of sugar in your blood. So if you recognize you’re in a particularly stressful period at work reconsider your snack options. You don’t have to go full-health mode and only eat celery and raw carrots. But a few healthy substitutions like black or green tea instead of coffee, dark chocolate instead of candy bars, or even having foods rich in probiotics like yogurt, could help with your cortisol levels.
Take deep breaths
Honestly, this sounds like a cliche, but it works. Deep breathing exercises have been shown to reduce cortisol levels in people who are stressed. There’s an endless variety of techniques and breathing exercises out there. One that is easy to do at work involves breathing in through your nose until you feel the air fill your belly, then breathing out through your mouth.
Follow the 20-20-20 rule
If you spend hours in front of a screen trying to race against a deadline, no doubt you may be operating at a high level of stress. If you feel like your eyes are raw, dry, or tired, you may attribute that to the stress you're feeling, but actually it could be your eyes growing tired from a barrage of blue light. If this happens to you remember the 20-20-20 eye rule. Every 20 minutes, take a 20 second break from looking at your screen and stare at something about 20 feet away from you to give your eyes a break. If you’re looking for on-going protection from blue light, consider using a supplement that contains lutein, which can help naturally protect your eyes from negative effects of blue light.
Keep your immune system strong
Stress can wear down your immune system, making it easier for you to get sick. Cortisol can affect the way your body makes white blood cells, so a supplement with vitamin C can help.
Future Proof is a supplement with many ingredients that support a healthy immune system including vitamin C, D, and beta glucan. It also has lutein, which can be helpful for your eye health, particularly for people who spend a lot of time looking at screens during the day.
Whatever supplement routine you decide on, be sure it’s one you can consistently follow every day. The supplement that works best is the one you actually remember to take.