Stress Awareness Day is on 4th November and provides a great reason to talk about wellbeing in the workplace, especially as we head towards what can be the busiest time of the year.
We’ve all heard
or said “I’m stressed” in the workplace. It’s an understandable response to pressure. But what do we mean when we say we’re stressed?
Firstly, stress itself is not a mental health issue (like depression or anxiety), instead it is a physical response to external stressors. It originates from the days of cavemen when we needed a boost of chemicals within our bodies to deal with predators or hunting, commonly referred to as ‘fight or flight’.
We all have a unique spectrum for stress and react to things differently. Some stress can be good, it can really hone the mind and allow us to push forward, but when that starts to tip over the healthy line, it can lead to bigger issues if left unaddressed.
So, it’s important that we recognise in ourselves what is good stress and what is bad stress. In certain situations, with the flood of chemicals, people may respond with the fight response – and become aggressive or agitated towards others. Or they may respond by the act of flight – ignoring the situation in the hope it goes away or respond by freezing and simply shut down.
Stressed employees will impact on your business, as productivity will dip with people struggling to concentrate or putting off tasks. Employees could become difficult to work with or end up taking time off due to the physical ramifications of stress.
However you look at it, businesses cannot afford to ignore stress in the workplace.
Each business will have its individual stressors, but you can use things like wellbeing workshops or webinars to highlight these sorts of issues to employees and managers to help them spot the signs and deal with them as soon as they arise.
Some insurance products, like Group Income Protection, provide workshops or services that can help employees understand and deal with stress. Usually these are offered at no additional cost as part of the proposition. Aston Lark Employee Benefits takes the time to understand your needs to maximise the premium spend.
This Stress Awareness Day why not put aside some time to discuss stress with your team and Aston Lark Employee Benefits.