10 Simple Yet Effective Ways to Manage Mental Stress at Work

Mental stress at work is an issue that affects most people, no matter their age or the type of job they do. Learning how to manage this type of stress effectively is necessary to prevent it from negatively affecting your health. Around 47 million people are quitting their jobs because of high exhaustion levels. Here are some simple yet effective ways you can reduce and manage mental stress at work:

Get Organized

You might think that being organized is only for the home, but you can also keep your workspace tidy and clean. It will help reduce stress at work because it will make it easier for you to find things when you need them, and having everything in one place gives you fewer chances of forgetting things.

Make a List

One of the most effective ways to manage mental stress at work is to make a list. It can be in the form of a literal paper or digital list. Some apps allow you to keep track of your tasks and break them down into smaller steps. If you feel overwhelmed by how much you need to get done, breaking down tasks into smaller chunks will make them feel more manageable.

In addition, setting aside dedicated time for completing those smaller chunks is another vital part of managing mental stress at work. Use timers or calendars, so your brain knows when it's time for something specific. For example, a timer reminds you that the next hour is dedicated to exercise or medication.


Exercise is one of the most effective ways to relieve mental stress at work. It can help you sleep better, feel better, think better, and feel more confident and energized. Unfortunately, the stress of working in a competitive environment causes us to take on too much responsibility for our team's success or failure. It's not uncommon for employees to work long hours out of fear that they may lose their job if they don't meet their quotas.

Exercising at work is one way to release this built-up tension while also getting some fresh air during your lunch break. If your office doesn't have an exercise room, try exercising outdoors. For example, a walk around the block gives your mind some time away from whatever was stressing it out before returning refreshed and ready for action once again.

Get Enough Sleep

You can't expect to be at your best or most productive if you don't get enough sleep. Sleep is a crucial part of our mental health; most people need seven to eight hours every night.

Unfortunately, people in full-time employment often don't sleep for proper 8 hours or take sound sleep at night. A survey on working adults by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention disclosed that 32.6% slept for six or fewer hours a night.

If you're not getting enough sleep, there are steps you can take to improve your quantity and quality of sleep so that it doesn't interfere with your workday:

  • Set aside time for going to bed and waking up each day
  • Don't use electronic devices right before going to sleep
  • Allow yourself a relaxing routine before bedtime

Manage Your Time Effectively

Establish a routine that works for you and stick to it. It will help you focus on the task rather than worrying about what's coming up next. Prioritize your activities by importance, and then plan out how much time each task will take. Once you have a master schedule, use a to-do list or calendar to track short-term and long-term deadlines.

Take Control of Your Thoughts and Feelings

You can only control yourself and the way you react to situations. However, this doesn't mean you should be hard on yourself when things don't go as planned. Thinking positively about whatever is bothering you rather than beating yourself up is better.

Eat Health

It's necessary to have a balanced diet with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. A healthy diet will help you maintain a healthy weight, which can help reduce stress. It's also important to drink plenty of water. Staying hydrated can keep you energized throughout the day and avoid dehydration, which is linked to anxiety and fatigue.

Finally, be sure your food contains fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B, carbohydrates, and antioxidants. All these nutrients are stress busters. Some studies have found Vitamin C as a stress reliever, too.

Establish and Maintain Boundaries Between Work and Home

You might find yourself constantly checking work email at home, jamming out to music you heard at work, or worrying about the next project that will inevitably come up. It can be especially true if you work for yourself or have a small team where everyone works remotely. In addition to having boundaries between work and home, it's necessary not to bring negative feelings from one environment into another.

The key is setting limits or boundaries. Set your working hours and work according to your capacity. A report disclosed that around 59% of managers are pushed to work during lunch breaks.

Take Breaks

Taking breaks is essential because they're a great way to help you relax, unwind, and recharge. Breaks also give your mind a chance to rest from what you've been focusing on. In addition, taking breaks can reduce the time it takes for stress to build up in your body.

Taking short breaks after working for 75-90 minutes can help lessen the stress and maximize employees' productivity.


Meditation is a crucial stress management technique. It can help you to focus on your mind and body, relax and reduce stress, focus on the present moment and be more mindful. You don't need to meditate for an hour to release stress. A favorite step over your desk for 5-10 minutes will work as a stress buster or help to manage stress. For example, you can concentrate on your breath for 2 minutes and give additional 3 minutes to repeating positive affirmations mentally.

Work on Stress Management Techniques and Make Them a Habit

The key is figuring out what stress management techniques work for you and making them a habit. It is where it gets a bit tricky because what works for one person may not work for another. For example, a manager working on a laptop may find exercising more effective in managing his stress level. In contrast, a factory worker may prefer to meditate to relieve the stress on his mind. The trick is finding something to help you manage your stress and make it part of your routine.

Everyone deals differently with pressure, no matter their chosen strategy or activities. Remember that you don't have to be perfect. The important thing is that you keep practicing these techniques until they become second nature.