stress at work infographic via shepherds friendly society

According to research, someone is made ill by stress at work every two minutes. With the average person spending 90,000 hours at work over their lifetime, it is important we find ways to beat workplace stress in order to lead happier and more fulfilling lives.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) claimed 0.6 million workers suffering from work-related stress anxiety and depression (new and long-standing cases) in  2018/2019

It is evident that the causes of stress at work are something that needs to be tackled across the country. So what are the symptoms, most common causes, and things you can do to beat workplace stress?

[Note to managers: We are sure you are a supportive manager but some employees may not know how to handle stress at work and may not feel like they can speak up. Send this infographic to your employees so they never suffer in silence and to help with your team morale!]

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Stress in the workplace: Symptoms, causes and how to beat it [Text Version]

According to research [1], someone in Britain is made ill by stress at work every two minutes.

53.2% of workers report that stress is an issue in their current workplace.

61.9% believe that their employer looks down on workers who get stressed.

57.4% think that their manager does NOT offer support to help them manage stress at work.

Discover if you are suffering from stress, what the major stressors are in the workplace and what you can do to beat it.

Symptoms of work stress and anxiety include:

Physical symptoms: Psychological symptoms: Behavioural symptoms:
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • An increase in sick days or absenteeism
  • Muscular tension
  • Anxiety
  • Irritability
  • Headaches
  • Discouragement
  • A drop in work performance
  • Heart palpitations
  • Loneliness
  • Problems with interpersonal relationships
  • Insomnia
  • Pessimism
  • Impatience
  • Raised blood pressures
  • Lack of concentration
  • Disinterest

What causes stress at work?

  • Bad management (65.8%)
  • Heavy workloads (34.1%)
  • Low morale within the workplace (38.1%)
  • Long working hours (29.3%)
  • Unfriendly colleagues (35.7%)
  • Poor work/life balance (25.5%)


How to beat workplace stress

Start by reaching out
Talk your concerns over with your employer or HR manager. Having face-to-face conversations can often solve issues faster and can be an effective way of blowing off steam. It’s also more personal and makes it easier to convey emotion.

 Look for support at home
A strong network of supportive friends and family members is extremely important to managing stress in all areas of your life. The act of ‘talking it out’ and getting support and sympathy can help you to regain your sense of calm.

Review your diet
Your food choices can have a huge impact on how you feel during the work day. Eating small, frequent and healthy meals can help your body to maintain an even level of blood sugar, keeping your energy and focus up, and avoiding mood swings.

Get active
Try to incorporate more exercise into your working day. Physical activity produces endorphins — a chemical in the brain that acts as a natural painkiller — and also improves the ability to sleep, which in turn reduces

Take time to recharge
Get the full amount of sleep you need to switch off and feel your best. When you are tired, you are less patient and easily agitated which can increase stress.  Most adults need 7-8 hours of sleep per night.

Prioritise and organise
There are simple, practical steps you can take to regain control when your workload is causing you stress. These include: creating a balanced schedule, leaving earlier in the morning, avoiding over- committing yourself and always tackling high-priority tasks.

Break bad habits
If you focus on the downside of every situation and interaction, you’ll find yourself drained of energy and motivation. Positive thinking helps with stress management and can even improve your health. Practice positive self talk, be open to humour and surround yourself with positive people.