Work related Stress
Prevental Healthcare Limited are proud to be an approved supplier of training to combat work related stress for the NHS Black Country Clinical Commissioning Groups.
Stress can hit anyone at any level of the business and recent research shows that work related stress is widespread and is not confined to particular sectors, jobs or industries although some sectors seem to experience more than their ‘fair share’ of problems including Healthcare, Education and Social services.
The Health & Safety Executive define work related stress as:
“The adverse reaction people have to excessive pressures or other types of demand placed on them at work.”
Although stress in itself is not an illness, if it does become too excessive and prolonged then a number of problems can arise.
Well thought-out, organised and managed work is generally good for us but when insufficient attention to job design, work organisation and management has taken place, it can result in Work related stress.
Work related stress develops because a person is unable to cope, or believes that they are unable to cope, with the demands being ‘placed upon them’.
Stress, including work related stress, can be a significant cause of illness and is known to be linked with high levels of sickness absence, staff turnover and other issues such as making more errors and in some cases a higher risk of workplace accidents.
The HSE have identified six main causes of work related stress which you can read about here.
Pressure v Stress
There is a difference between pressure and stress. Pressure can be positive and a motivating factor, and is often essential in a job. It can help us achieve our goals and perform better. Stress occurs when this pressure becomes excessive, or if the ‘personal stress limit’ of the person is exceeded. Stress is a natural reaction to too much pressure.
Balancing Demands and Pressure
A person experiences stress when they perceive that the demands of their work are greater than their ability to cope. Coping means balancing the demands and pressures placed on you (i.e. the job requirements) with your skills and knowledge (i.e. your capabilities).
For example, if you are given a tight deadline on a project that you feel you have neither the skills nor ability to do well, then you may begin to feel undue pressure which could result in work related stress.
Stress can also result from having too few demands, as people will become bored, feel undervalued and lack recognition. If they feel they have little or no say over the work they do or how they do it, this may cause them stress.
Stress affects people in different ways and what one person finds stressful can be normal to another. With each new situation a person will decide what the challenge is and whether they have the resources to cope.
If they decide they don’t have the resources to cope, they will begin to feel stressed.
How they appraise the situation will depend on various factors, including:
- their background and culture;
- their skills and experience;
- their personality;
- their personal circumstances;
- their individual characteristics;
- their health status;
- their ethnicity, gender, age or disability; and
- other demands both in and outside work.
Developing Coping Skills
Whilst employers have a duty of care to ensure that work related stress is effectively managed in the working environment, there is often very little that can be done to ‘compel’ employers to act.
In these cases it may be helpful to consider how you could develop a wider range of coping skills so that you experience less of the negative impacts of that pressure.
Individual Strategies to Cope with Work Related Stress
If you’re committed to overcoming your work related stress problems and your employer is not willing or able to make any work-place accomodations then you should consider following a course of CLB with Paul.
The Thriving at Work Programme is a psychological training programme that teaches you everything you need to know to make the necessary changes to any unhelpful thinking styles and any maladaptive safety behaviours you may have developed leading to you effectively increasing your tolerance to Stress
Business Services for Informed Employers
Prevental Healthcare Ltd. also offer training programmes that your employer may be interested in if work related stress has become a major problem in the business.
Why Choose Prevental?
Paul is a highly experienced, academically qualified psychologist with over 30 years experience of working with people to overcome life challenges and achieve life goals.
We are an approved supplier of mental health support services to the NHS Black Country Clinical Commissioning Groups who we have been working with since late 2017.
We have been helping improve people's mental health in the West Midlands since 2009 and have more than 30,000 hours of clinical experience.
Prevental Healthcare are expert mental health professionals dedicated to helping you and your employees thrive.
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