Happy Stress Awareness Month! Fort Worth is not only the home of PhysAssist Scribes’ corporate office but also the American Institute of Stress. One of the most common types of stress is workplace stress, or stress that one feels because of his or her job. According to a recent study performed by the institute, 40% of workers reported their job was very or extremely stressful. “Chronic job strain can put both your physical and emotional health at risk,” says Paul J. Rosch, MD, the president of the American Institute of Stress.
As scribes who work in a busy ED, I’m sure you’ve felt overworked, frustrated and burned out while working at some point. While it’s easy to pinpoint what is stressing you out (managing school and scribing, getting into med school, etc.), it’s sometimes harder to identify ways to reduce stress. According to the Society for Human Resources Management, here are a few methods to successfully manage your stress:
- Breathe –Focus on taking slow and deep breaths instead of rapid breaths. Inhale -> hold briefly -> inhale -> hold briefly and continue this pattern. Closing your eyes while concentrating on your breathing can help as well.
- Relax – Work on taking 5-10 minutes out of your day to do the breathing exercises we mentioned earlier. Picture yourself in a calming and peaceful environment, such as your favorite vacation spot.
- Exercise – Get moving! Studies have shown that simply walking for 30 minutes daily can help you sleep better and supports your cardiovascular system.
- Diet –Like machines, your body requires the right type of fuel to function. Try to cut processed foods out of your diet and drink more water. Avoid things like sugar, bad carbs and fast foods. Embrace lean proteins, fruits and veggies.
- Sleep – A lack of sleep has been shown to affect your weight, judgment, attentiveness and social interactions. Create a dark, quiet and calm place to sleep.
- Attitude – Just about everything is easier to manage with a positive outlook; stress is one of those things. Approaching tasks that can appear stressful with a positive attitude can help.
What are some positive ways that you’ve dealt with stress?