Workplace Stress and Its Impact on Health

Coping Strategies for Success

In today’s fast-paced and competitive work environment, workplace stress and its impact on health has become an increasingly common phenomenon. Stress occurs when the capacity and ability to bounce back from challenges becomes impossible. Some stress is a good thing, pressure and deadlines can be the energy, and drive that is needed to complete tasks – but it is when the capacity for bounce back has been exceeded. Feeling Stressed can be entirely individual (some people feel their reserves expiring more readily than others) and it can be that whole teams feel stressed when their capacity to cope has been surpassed. The feeling of stress can Come internally (from the individual take on the world) or it can be external – poor management, and or extraordinary events (for example the global shocks of the last few years)

Here are some effective coping strategies to help individuals achieve success while maintaining Their well-being.

The Impact of Workplace Stress on Health

Physical Health Effects

Prolonged workplace stress can manifest in various physical health problems – including chronic pain, back and muscular-skeletal problems – digestive issues (such as irritable bowel syndrome), as well as some more critical manifestations of poor health – there are probably nohealth conditions that are not created, or made worse by stress.

Mental Health Effects

Workplace stress can also take a toll on mental well-being. High-stress levels contribute to anxiety, depression, burnout, and reduced job satisfaction – of course the mental effects of stress is sometimes well hidden – people like to put on a brave face, and although mental health is talked about in the corporate space, but there is still a stigma attached to “not being able to cope” If someone’s behaviour has changed, they are not acting as their “normal” self; they are for example, more explosive, withdrawn, or you become aware that they are ‘self-medicating’ with alcohol or drugs/or other self-abusive habits (gambling, spending money), or they are looping past conversations, resurrecting past relationship grievances, or obsessing about past conversations – they are probably under too much stress for their system to process – of course, un-dealt with stress can transition into a mental health problem (depression, anxiety or full blow mental health episode)

Coping Strategies for Success


Identify the Sources of Stress

The first step in managing workplace stress is identifying its sources. Evaluate your work environment, tasks, and interactions to determine the factors contributing to stress – the most common source of stress at work, is poor managers. Managers who are promoted from the role of doing the job to supervising others doing the job, are particularly susceptible and can exacerbate stress in the workplace – they are stressed themselves and don’t have time to manage. As listed above look for the signs and symptoms of stress manifesting in your team members.


Prioritise and Set Boundaries

Learning to prioritise tasks and set realistic boundaries is essential. Break down your workload into manageable chunks, focusing on one task at a time. Talk to the person who supervises your work; more than often it can be that your management doesn’t even know what your workload is like, and keep piling it on! Knowing your limit is the first step. Keep the lines of communication open, and conversation flowing with your manager, so that you aren’t always flagging problems after they have become unmanageable, but you are anticipating issues and can plan and avoid the overwhelm to start with.


Practice Effective Time Management

Effective time management techniques, such as creating to-do lists, prioritising tasks, and scheduling breaks. This can significantly reduce stress, increase productivity, and improve overall work-life balance. Kate Cook Biz offers practical strategies and tools to help individuals master time management skills. Learn how to identify time-wasting activities, delegate effectively, and optimise workflow for maximum efficiency.

Engage in Stress-Relief Activities

Integrating stress-relief activities into your routine is crucial for maintaining overall well-being. Regular exercise, deep breathing exercises, meditation, and mindfulness practices are all effective ways to reduce stress levels. The major, and often forgotten tactic for handling stress is to make sure that you have a diet that is not feeding stress – processed food that is devoid of the nutrients you need to manage stress, is a common issue. Make sure that you are not Sur coming to “ultra-processed foods” – which are so addictive when you are in periods of stress (crisps, chips, burgers etc) Balancing your blood sugar (your energy from glucose) is critical.

Balancing blood sugar helps stabilise stress hormones, and stops you from diving into unhelpful habits like drinking. Watch coffee and tea intake, which are stimulants (and make you feel more stressed and jaggy)


Focus on a Positive Work Environment

Contributing to a positive work environment can alleviate stress. Focus on building supportive relationships with colleagues, practice gratitude, and celebrate achievements – all work and no play “makes Jack a dull boy so goes the old expression – so, remember to get the boundaries of your work day in, and have fun (and being playful and having good working relationships is very important in the mix) so, remember that the social side of work is very important into the bargain – and can add to the feeling of belonging. Humans are essentially “tribal” and feel like you belong, is a foundational human need – and that begins with the people you interact with.

Workplace stress is a prevalent issue that can have a significant impact on an individual’s health and well-being – start with the foundation of good, nutritious, food and add exercise, and good work social habits and it’s more than possible to build good resilience and use the positive effects of stress as motivation, rather than letting it become an enemy that overwhelms you.


Visit to find out how Kate Cook can help your teams harness their resilience and put stress back in its place!

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