Feeling anxious, irritable, and behind the eight ball? Don’t worry – you’re probably not the only one. Apparently, according to a recent survey conducted by Careercast.com, event coordinators have the sixth most stressful job in America, just behind the enlisted soldier, airline pilot, and police officer. The survey cites high-profile events and high expectations as the culprits for elevated stress levels, which can negatively affect a planner’s physical, social, and mental health.
As we begin to near the spring events season, when stress levels can be at an all-time high, how can we effectively manage the stress our job places upon us? There are thousands of stress management tools and tips we can access to assist us in effectively managing stress. Here are a few of my favorites:
Manage Your To-Do List
We all have the sacred to-do list, which has been scribbled on multiple post-it notes, organized into an Excel spreadsheet, or input into your daily calendar. If you are like me, you have everything listed there, from working on an annual project to eating lunch (sometimes it just feels good to make sure you can scratch off a task, right?). However, if you don’t prioritize tasks, you can get overwhelmed with all the minutia and never make a dent in the larger duties. I try to review my list weekly, prioritize items, and then attack them by completing one larger activity followed by one to two small tasks. This way, I feel the satisfaction of completing tasks, but know that I am also remaining focused on valid priorities.
At some point in the day, get out of your desk chair and take in some fresh air. Roll your shoulders and complete a few stretches at your desk. Walk across campus to get lunch or visit a coworker. Physical movement will not only release some of your stress, but also will let your brain take a much needed break and give you an opportunity to recharge.
It’s OK to ask for help – we all need to do so at some point. If your stress level has risen too much, talk to your supervisor or coworkers to ask for assistance. Delegate some of your responsibilities to others, if needed, and let people know how you are feeling.
Keep a Happiness List
I have a list of thirty things posted in my office at home that make me happy (walking the dog, going to brunch, eating on patios, etc.). At stressful times in my life, I review my Happiness List and attempt to incorporate one of the thirty activities into my daily routine. Not only does this bring me joy, but it also reminds me how great life is and that this stressful time will pass.
How do you best manage your stress?