Are you having a stressful day at work? Take a lesson from Maisie!

World mental health day focuses our minds on the challenges of stress, how it makes us feel and how it impacts our daily lives.  We all understand that some stress is good for us, but how much and how come some days we can deal with it and other times we feel over whelmed? The key is to challenge your stress and use it build resilience in the workplace, but that’s easier said than done.

Over the next few weeks I’m going to publish my top tips for managing your stress at work. It will help you build up a tool kit of coping strategies for managing those stressful times. There are so  many factors influencing how we process our stress; how confidant we feel, how in control, our perception of how others view us, how secure we feel in our relationships and so the list goes on.

A great starting point is to have a stop, pause, reflect moment. So often we just battle on with all our lives allowing the stress build and ambush our thoughts.  A great analogy is our new puppy, Maisie, who recently arrived in the household. She was greeted by a houseful of teenagers and an older dog, who was horrified that we thought a puppy was a good idea! All very perplexing and stressful for Maisie, who was used to living in a pen with just her brothers and sisters to play with. Suddenly, she was immersed in a whole new world and unfamiliar environment. Whenever she became over whelmed she would stop, sit and watch for a minute or so.  You could see her observing, taking it all in and deciding on her next move.  When she was ready she’d re-engage.  In the first few weeks she’d do this several times a day and as time went by she stopped doing it. Maisie was following her natural instinct to manage her stress and to great effect.  If we all took a leaf from Maisie’s book we’d be taking the first step to managing our stress.

Does sunshine impact on our confidence?

The weather in the North West has been wonderful – positively Mediterranean! I’ve really noticed the difference it has made – sunshine makes the world seem so much brighter. More importantly it brings everyone outdoors and creates a far more social environment. You can really see why connectivity is so important for our mental wellbeing. Casual conversations are so much easier when we have great British weather to talk about. It creates a sense of community. My work as a stress management coach focuses on the importance of creating connections and good communication in the workplace and it has been great to see this play out in the wider community because of the sunshine. I’ve had more casual conversations in the last few weeks of glorious sunshine than I had all winter in the depths of that freezing wet weather. Long may it last!