April is Stress Awareness Month. During this time, health professionals and experts strive to increase awareness about what causes stress and how to combat it. Stress is defined as a physical, mental, or emotional stimulus that causes bodily or mental tension, initiating the “fight or flight” response. The symptoms of stress are innumerable and can range from headaches and nausea to irritability and panic attacks.
Work is one of the most common stressors, and its impact can be detrimental to your productivity and performance. To help curb stress and its negative effects in the workplace, we crowdsourced productivity tips from entrepreneurs, freelancers, and small business owners and used their responses to create a graphic that explores various tips, tools, and resources.
Staying focused throughout the day is key to productivity. Long-term stress negatively impacts cognitive functions, including your ability to concentrate. What can you do to stop this adverse relationship between stress and concentration? Rich Myers from Transmit Start-ups recommends daily meditation. “Headspace is a smartphone app offering guided meditations,” says Myers. “I use Headspace every morning for 10-15 minutes to be mindful and set myself up for the day ahead.” In addition, fueling your body with a nutritious diet and exercise can help promote a positive mindset and give you the energy you need to complete daily tasks.
Automation proved to be another popular method when it comes to increasing productivity and decreasing stress levels. Jonathan Pfahl from Rockstar Group explained, “Another key point to keep stress levels at bay is to have the right systems in place. Our accounting platform provided by Intuit is brilliant for managing cash flow and the accounting requirements of the businesses.” Streamlining your business can help eliminate repetitive tasks and allow you to focus on what matters the most. In addition, Danielle Haley from Freelance SEO writes, “Some of the online tools that we’ve stumbled across through the years […] can provide excellent cost savings and can help you enhance the way you do business.”
Last but not least, organisation was another recurring theme. Taking the time to organise your work life helps you become more effective and impactful in your day-to-day. Thankfully, there are tools that can help with everything including time management, to-do lists, and tagging your favourite sites for quick accessibility. Greg Donert of Phoenix Studios writes, “Pocket is a fantastic free bookmarking tool which allows you not only to bookmark and tag your favourite sites, but it also allows you to explore a curated list of sites which people recommend.”