From the minute we hop onto the morning bus, train or cab – face crushed up against the window barely able to keep our eyes open – until the minute we leave, nine hours later, drained and tired, we are under stress.
We often bring our work home, never really leaving it behind. On top of it all, we have children to take care of, a house to tend to and a partner that needs attention, leaving little time for ourselves.
So, what’s causing our stress and are we more vulnerable to it?
The Gender Stress Gap
According to a data from Arinite, between 2009 and 2014 female workers were 1.5 times more likely to suffer stress in the workplace than their male counterparts.
Bryan Richards, an occupational health consultant, states it’s not simply that female workers are more likely to report and speak out about stress.
Females tend to do very emotionally-heavy jobs, such as teaching, social work and nursing. These can be very taxing jobs emotionally, leading to feelings of excessive pressure and strain.
According to Total Jobs, the most stressful positions of 2014 were:
- Social work
- Police work
- Health care
- Prison office work
Stress and Finances
Finances are also a large part in feelings of anxiety over stress and work.
London, which offers workers the highest average salaries in the UK, also happens to be the region with the lowest levels of reported worker stress.
Dr. Sheri Jacobson, Clinical Director at Harley Therapy, suggests that workers in London are also able to appreciate a better working life due to the social options available to them outside of work.
Large Corporations are Generally More Pressure-Intensive Environments
Finally, another worker stress inducer for women is the size of the company.
Reported stress levels are highest in companies which have over 250 employees.
Brian Richards suggests this is a result of,
a lack of job security, because people feel they are easily replaceable, and also feelings of insignificance. Smaller workplaces are generally a much happier environment as people have more interaction with their seniors, are able to learn more, and express their problems or issues easily.
Overall, it seems that if you’re a female, working for a large company, your chances of workplace stress are significantly higher than a male working for a small company.
Taking these factors into account, what can be done to reduce workplace stress?
- Have a strong network support. Having a friend to vent off your latest fight with your boss goes a long way to helping you stave off stress.
- Take up some relaxing activities such as yoga, reading, or walking
- Incorporate more exercise in your day. Exercise is a great stress reducer
- Have a healthy well rounded diet. Ditch the candy for some apple slices next time you head to work.
Does your work cause you a big headache? Let us know what you’re doing to manage your stress.