Stress & anxiety are always present in a Startup. Focus on your Vision, Customers & Team and you’ll achieve your goals. – Paul Graham, co-founder of Y Combinator
Stress Management Topics: SMART Goals, Automate, Out-Source, Coping, Managing Stress, Relaxing
Stress Management is an inevitable part of running an organization. Despite its many rewards, it can be difficult to ignore the many pressures that come with an entire organization resting on your shoulders. As your organization grows and you have more people under your influence, that sense of responsibility will only increase, leading to varying degrees of anxiety.
Coping with Stress. If you let stress consume you, it can hurt your productivity and eventually impact your achievement. For that reason, it’s important to find coping mechanisms that allow you to worry less. You’ll then be able to focus on what needs to be done, which is growing your organization. Here are a few tips for keeping your management anxiety in check.
1. Set SMART Goals & Work toward them.
Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Timely
Anxiety often comes as a result of trying to accomplish everything at once. Instead, cut your larger goals into small, manageable chunks and work toward reaching each small milestone – easily & quickly. Celebrate when you make significant progress toward a goal. Over time, you’ll learn to pay more attention to what you’ve accomplished, rather than feeling overwhelmed by the many things you have left to do
Rewarding yourself as you reach each significant milestone. That will give you something to look forward to in the near future, which will also keep you from looking past the milestone to what you’ll need to do next. [Take a break to clear your mind] Set aside time each month & quarter to review your short & long-term goals and update your progress on each of them. You’ll likely notice how much you’ve accomplished in the previous time and feel good about your progress.
2. Automate. In addition to human service providers, you can also use technology to free up time without sacrificing work output. Software can take over your planning & scheduling activities. Usually, this will reduce or eliminate the errors that you might make when you’re multi-tasking and trying to do too much.
3. Out-Source. Organization leaders often work long, tiring hours, whether they’re running a one-person operation or they have a staff. Either way, it’s important to find ways to off-load as many daily tasks as possible. The more routine the duty, the more likely someone else should handle it. If you can’t afford a salaried worker, consider a part-time entry-level worker or out-sourcing to a free-lancer or student intern.
4. Learn Coping mechanisms. “Mind over matter” may sound like jargon, but anxiety & stress can really are under your control. Relaxation techniques can help you when stress is at its worst, with your mind racing & your body tense. You can just lock yourself in your office for 5-15 minutes in the middle of the day and do a few exercises to relax your mind.
5. Learning to Relax is an art. Look for meditation classes or mindfulness-based yoga courses near you or get the info from a book. You’ll be able to take the information you learn with you throughout the week. Over time, your relaxation techniques will become a habit – automatic – and you’ll find other healthier ways to deal with stress.
6. Over-whelmed. When all your projects feels too much, take a mind-clearing break (ie, short walk) to put things back into perspective. Take a few calming breaths and focus on the task at hand and not everything else that needs to be done. Also, take time to do something for yourself. What’s a fun activity you like to do? (walking, gardening, movie, etc)
7. Taking Steps to Manage Stress
from American Psychological Association
- Identify your Stressors. Take some Notes for a week or two to identify which situations create the most stress and how you respond to them. Record your thoughts, feelings & information about the environment, including the people & circumstances involved, the physical setting and how you reacted. Taking notes can help you find patterns among your stressors and your reactions to them.
- Develop Healthy Responses. Instead of attempting to fight stress with compensators, do your best to make healthy choices when you feel the tension rise. Exercise is a great stress-buster. Yoga can be an excellent choice, but any form of physical activity is beneficial. Also make time for hobbies & favorite activities. Whether it’s reading a novel, watching a movie or playing board games. Make sure to set aside time for the things that bring you pleasure. Getting enough good-quality sleep is also important for effective stress management. Build healthy sleep habits by limiting your caffeine intake late in the day & minimizing stimulating activities, such as Computer & TV use, at night.
- Establish Boundaries. In today’s over-burdened world, it’s easy to feel pressure to be available during your off time. Establish some work-life boundaries for yourself. Although people have different preferences when it comes to how much they blend their work & home life, creating some clear boundaries between these realms can reduce the potential for work-life conflict & the stress that goes with it.
- Take time to Re-Charge. To avoid the negative effects of chronic stress & burnout, we need time to replenish and return to our pre-stress level of functioning. This recovery process requires “switching off” from work by having periods of time when you are neither engaging in work-related activities, nor thinking about work. That’s why it’s critical that you disconnect from time to time, in a way that fits your needs & preferences. Don’t let your time-off days go to waste. Whenever possible, take time off to relax & unwind, so you come back to work feeling re-invigorated and ready to perform at your best. When you’re not able to take time off,
- Learn how to Relax. Techniques such as meditation, deep breathing exercises & mindfulness (a state in which you actively observe present experiences and thoughts without judging them (ie, during Naps) can help melt away stress. Start by taking a few minutes each day to focus on a simple activity like breathing, walking or enjoying a meal. The skill of being able to focus purposefully on a single activity without distraction will get stronger with practice and you’ll find that you can apply it to many different aspects of your life.
Conclusion: Anxiety not only impacts your productivity, but it also disrupts your health and well-being. By learning how to manage your stress and finding healthier ways to cope, you can eventually begin to enjoy the challenges of the day. Whether you use relaxation techniques or learn to meditate, just a few minutes when stress is at its worst can make a big difference.
Comments: Do you have any other ideas to reduce Stress & increase Achievements?
from Entrepreneur.com 22 July 16 enhanced by Peter/CXO Wiz4.biz