Stress is the most likely cause of relapse, and must be consciously managed.
Develop an awareness of the stressors that you’re most vulnerable and exposed to in the workplace, and what indicates that you are stressed.
Common signs of stress include:
- feelings of hopelessness, or self doubt
- anxiety (heart palpitations, shortness of breath)
- forgetfulness, or making mistakes
- poor communication and being easily angered
- increased intake of alcohol or drugs.
Common sources of stress include:
- poor work conditions such as crowding or insufficient workspace, loud or excessive noise, dirty or untidy conditions
- conflict or poor communication channels with other staff
- long periods doing the same task
- too much or too little work
- time pressures and deadlines
- changes in procedures and policies without notice
- lack of job security
- lack of opportunity for advancement.
You may or may not be able to change some of these conditions, but there are activities and lifestyle factors that you can maintain, that can help you keep a balance, or release your stress. Suggestions include:
- always taking tea and lunch breaks
- doing some physical activity at lunch time to release stress from the body and activate natural endorphins
- asking a co-worker you trust to notice changes in how you seem to be coping, and give feedback about this
- learning stress reduction techniques such as meditation, breathing exercises, yoga
- discussing work concerns with a counsellor, or trusted friend, who can give good advice
- resisting the use of alcohol or drugs to manage stress
- using your sick leave to see your doctor to discuss any health concerns, or, if you are be assisting by an employment service provider, your case manager to discuss ways to deal with the issues that are causing you stress.
There are benefits and risks to disclosing your mental illness to your employer and co-workers when discussing stress at work.
If you have been working for the same company for over 6 months, you may file a Workman’s Compensation claim. The Attorney must review the details of your claim in order to successfully find the assistance you need.