Since 1/3 of a person’s day is spent at work, it’s understandable that chronic work stress can be as detrimental as second-hand smoke, according to a new study recently published.
Some workplace stressors include:
- long working hours
- heavy job demands
- feeling a lack of job control
- a lack of social support at work,
- and a lack of work-family balance at home.
The chronic stress Caribbean workers are facing is killing us, our morale and hurting our families. Individuals experiencing work stress will dread getting up in the morning for work, complain of headaches, fatigue and stomach pains, and are prone to call off work. At least 60% of doctor visits stem from stress-related complaints and illnesses. Worst of all, we simply o not know how to effectively cope with stress. 42% of patients report lying awake for long hours, 36% report overeating or eating unhealthy foods and 27% skip meals.
Workplace stress contributes to feelings of depression, which contributes to a significant loss in productivity in the workplace, an underrated expense many employers neglect to factor in. Businesses have a moral obligation to address the conditions in their workplace that can contribute to the employee’s death in any way.
If businesses fail to address the stress their employees are under, it will undoubtedly cripple the growth and development of their company, but more importantly, it may cost your employee their life.
Assessing the prevalence of workplace stressors, redesigning jobs, reducing or eliminating workplace practices, and giving their employees access to stress management seminars or Employee Assistance Programs, is just a start to reducing factors that contribute to workplace-induced stress.
Employees who are facing daunting levels of stress should reach out to a psychologist or counsellor who can help them manage the 800lb gorilla on their backs before its too late. Don’t let it mount to panic attacks, unnecessary trips to the hospital or job loss because of the weight of it all.