Stress in the workplace is hardly a new issue. For as long as there has been employment, there has been stress among workers and company owners. Even in the age of this advanced technology we live in, the stress levels have not been lessened. In fact, thanks to all of this technology, workers lives have actually become more stressful.
Since email, cell phones, laptops, and other inventions have made it possible for people to stay connected 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, people are now overworking and finding it more difficult to unplug or unwind after a hard day’s work. This is leading to an increase in stress-related conditions including anxiety and depression.
Another reason stress is on the rise in the American workplace is due to the growth of consumerism and their demands. Many store chains are now open twenty four hours a day and never close. Manufacturing companies are similar in that scheduling, with workers have to put in overtime on nights and weekends, above and beyond a ‘normal’ workday.
Many workers are now unable to find jobs in their home area so they are forced to commute the larger cities to make money but then face a daily long commute. Some even chose to leave their families for the work week in another state. All of that travel, activity and leave time from their support system can do damage to the spirit and stability of the employee.
Hard work is part of reality. Without hard work, people are not able to achieve the financial benefits they need the job for in the first place. There is no reason not to work hard but there is a fine line between being a hard worker and being a workaholic. If you find yourself going to work to detach yourself from the other things in your life or are unable to manage your time balancing work and outside-the-office life, you may be compulsive in your work habits which is not a healthy place to be. If you are not able to stop thinking about work for any period of time in order to relax, it may be time to reset your priorities.
People will often be afraid to admit their job is too stressful until something actually hinders their ability to work. It is important to recognize signs you are overworking and learn techniques to truly unwind such as by getting more exercise, unplugging your electronics when the workday is done, get plenty of quality sleep, and seek medical intervention when things feel too out of control.