We don’t stop to think about work or the stress we get from it, but working life can not only be stressful, but it also has the potential to make us ill.
We won’t always be consciously aware that we’re stressed, but the signs are there. Working full time and working overtime, can be extremely stressful, particularly if there is no let up. The amount of work we’re expected to do, can leave us stressed and long term stress can impact our health. We work so hard, we forget to have a personal life.
It may not always be obvious to us, but anxiety, fatigue, insomnia, depression and general malaise are symptoms of the bigger picture and that if we took work out of the equation, those symptoms would probably disappear. Instead of asking ourselves questions about work, we continue to treat our symptoms, without thinking twice about why we have physical symptoms.
Stress and anxiety will always be part of the work scenario if we don’t deal with work issues, or at least slow down. There are many of us who deal with stress at work and although we may make those connections, we’re often reluctant to do anything about it. Unfortunately, we may not always be in position to change jobs, particularly if we have a young family, or a mortgage to pay, so we put up with our circumstances.
Luckily for me after 18 months of stress at work, my life changed when I found another job, but I had to find myself another job first and that added to my stress. It’s only when our circumstances change that we look back and equate how much we were stressed. After 18 months, my symptoms of anxiety, magically disappeared and my life became normal as far as work was concerned.
Perhaps this is something we must all think about. Although we have to work, health and lifestyle must be part of the work scenario and we need to be in control of all of it. Unfortunately, stress not only accounts for 1-3 work absences, but also long-term illness, particularly around anxiety and depression.