Event Update: Workplace Stress

workplace stress talk at SIM health week

Mind Care Clinic is pleased to be able to support Health Week at the Singapore Institute of Management (SIM) this year. During the week filled with various interesting talks for the staff and lecturers at SIM, Dr. Tan Hong Yee held a session on Workplace Stress & Burnout. 

Stress - the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Stress is not always a bad thing – in many situations, appropriate levels of challenge actually motivate and energize us; and when we successfully deal with these challenge, we obtain satisfaction and grow personally. Unfortunately, workplace stress sometimes arises due to a mismatch between the job requirements and our personal capacity, resources or needs.

Burnout and Depression

Work stress and burnout can have a wide-ranging impact both our physical and emotional health. Some body systems that may be affected include the cardiovascular system and gastro-intestinal system. In addition, stressful work environments can also contribute to increased absenteeism and workplace injuries.

Significantly, workplace stress can result in depression and anxiety if not adequately addressed. In fact, burnout shares many symptoms with clinical depression and/or anxiety. Some of these include:

  • Feeling anxious, irritable, or depressed
  • Loss of interest in work
  • Sleep difficulties
  • Fatigue
  • Poor concentration
  • Muscle tension or frequent headaches
  • Frequent gastric problems
  • Social withdrawal

Preventing Burnout

It is important to first identify and track possible contributing stressors. Sometimes, keeping a journal of stressful days and its associated events may help you find a pattern. Among these contributing factors, which are the ones that can be addressed directly?

Also, self-care in the face of stress is extremely important. Adopt good lifestyle habits such as avoiding excessive alcohol, frequent exercise and a proper diet. Ensure that you have adequate rest and sleep, and spend quality time relaxing especially with friends and family.

Work-specific good habits include establishing good boundaries between work and personal life, and scheduling breaks from work. Talking to your supervisor about your stress can also be helpful. If you find yourself having increasing anxiety or mood symptoms, it is a good idea to talk to your doctor to see how these symptoms can be addressed.

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