In England, one in six people report that they experience a common mental health problem, such as anxiety or depression, in any given week. Anxiety and stress at work can drastically affect your quality of life and enjoyment in the workplace; there are steps you can take to manage anxiety in the office, and get back to being focused, productive and content.
Anxiety can affect the performance of your tasks, the quality of the work you complete, and relationships with colleagues or supervisors. If you are struggling with managing anxiety, there are a range of resources to help improve your mental health and quality of life.
Careers with Disabilities have created some advice to help reduce stress and anxiety in the workplace. These tips intend to help you manage your symptoms at work, but do not use them as a substitute for professional support from your GP.
1. Lifestyle changes
For the majority of people, stress and anxiety is not confined solely to the workplace. One of the first steps in managing work anxiety is to reflect on your personal lifestyle choices. It is important to prioritise getting adequate sleep, eating healthy, exercising and engaging in social activities outside of work.
2. Ask for help
Many people become stressed or anxious when they feel unsure, uneasy or confused about the work they have to complete. It is essential to communicate with your supervisor, manager, or colleagues when you need help completing a task. While you may feel discomfort at first when approaching others for help, the clarification will be worthwhile in the long run. Plus, you will communicate to your colleagues that you are inquisitive and genuinely interested in doing a good job.
3. Create honest deadlines
Looming deadlines are one of the most significant factors contributing to workplace anxiety. It is essential to start prioritising your mental health before agreeing to a deadline you will be unable to meet. Be open with your employer about the stress you are under, and create a communication channel to negotiate timescales.
4. Access resources
Many workplaces are offering assistance to employees with mental health struggles, including anxiety. This could include free access to counselling services, and adjustments that can help you manage your symptoms in the workplace. If you have an anxiety condition, explore our advice on your rights as a disabled employee. We also have information on financial support through grants and schemes and how to find help in your area.