There are periods of life when you do not have enough strength, even for the usual tasks you managed to complete in a few minutes. You lose the desire to get out of bed in the morning, you make a lot of mistakes at work, refuse scheduled meetings, and every action is given to you with great difficulty. This can happen when you are experiencing severe anxiety and stress.
Constant stress worsens your physical condition and causes apathy, loss of strength, and in advanced cases, even depression. The last few years have been particularly stressful, which could not but affect you. No wonder your productivity has dropped significantly. Perhaps you have even lost the desire to do something — you are satisfied with the minimum that allows you to live until the next salary.
If you are worried about such a decrease in activity and you want to change something and are ready to act, it’s time for you to learn how to cope with external circumstances. We’ve put together some tips to help you turn anxiety and stress into productivity.
7 ways to turn anxiety and stress into productivity
1. Write a to-do list
It seems like a normal recommendation, but it helps. When you experience constant stress and anxiety, your concentration decreases, becoming unassembled. As a result, half of the tasks for the day are not performed by you just because you forget about them. This will help prevent the habit of fixing all important tasks on paper or in notes on the phone.
Start each day the same way: remember what you need to do today, and fit all your business into the schedule. Soon you will notice how much less you will worry, knowing that the risk of forgetting about any task is now minimal.
2. Take a break
Teach yourself to take a break, even if your work cannot be called difficult or energy-consuming. You need to be able to be distracted from any activity for at least 5-10 minutes. You can afford it even while working in the office: go out for a break, walk to the nearest coffee shop, talk to a colleague or get up from the table and walk down the corridor. Your brain will be able to switch to something else, and you will return to work with renewed vigour. The main thing is to practice this approach regularly.
3. Try to get enough rest
Without proper rest, you are unlikely to be able to work normally. Train yourself to treat your body and emotional state with all seriousness. Never work your weekends, don’t stay in the office after closing, don’t take a part-time job when you already feel tired, don’t be in touch after hours. Remember that your strength is a resource that needs to be replenished.
If you do not do this, then sooner or later, your energy will run out, and it is unlikely to cost one decrease in productivity. You can lose your job and get severe mental disorders as a bonus.
Make your vacation regular and high-quality. You should do something that brings you joy — meet your friends, have fun, take time for your hobbies, travel. Do not limit yourself to lying on the couch and scrolling through social networks.
4. Divide the work for periods of decline and recovery
Sometimes you feel rested and energetic for a long time, and then suddenly, there comes a moment when you feel that your strength is running out. Such a decline and a rise in productivity can alternate with each other. In this case, it is important to learn how to notice changes in your well-being in time and select work for each of your conditions.
For example, during periods of strength recovery, you can take on serious tasks that require you to focus your attention and give a lot of effort. And when the energy level drops, you can switch to doing small tasks.
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5. Think through a plan of action in case your worst suspicions become reality
When you are under constant stress and feel anxious, you can be inactive not because of a decline in strength but because of worries about your future. There are dozens of possible scenarios spinning in your head that confuse you. Instead of getting rid of anxious thoughts, try to think through what you can do if everything goes wrong.
Let’s say your worst fears have been confirmed. Ask yourself: will you have the opportunity to fix everything or not? If yes (and in most cases, an honest answer will sound like that), then what’s the point of worrying? It is better to spend the same amount of resources to think through a detailed action plan. With him, you will feel more confident, and you will not have to stand still for fear of the unknown. Remember that there are no hopeless situations, and get involved in the work.
6. Minimize uncertainty in your life
Always try to clarify and concretize everything that you don’t understand. This way, you will get rid of the feeling of anxiety and reduce the impact of stress. Both anxiety and stress arise in situations where you are faced with uncertainty.
If you make an effort to get as much information as possible from people around you or any other sources, you will improve the quality of your work and feel more confident. This, in turn, will have a positive impact on your productivity.
7. Be more tolerant of yourself
You can’t always be on the resource and work at the peak of your capabilities. Learn to treat yourself more patiently, with respect, and understanding. You are a person who has his own needs: you need quality sleep, healthy food, rest, motivation.
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You can make mistakes, get excessively tired, give up what you started halfway. Stop constantly scolding yourself — thereby, you only aggravate the situation, increasing the level of stress and anxiety. It is better to leave yourself alone at least for a while – allow yourself to recover, calm down and take up the necessary tasks, being already rested.