Did you know that anxiety disorders are the most common mental illnesses in the United States, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA)? Their website states that over 40 million adults in the U.S., over the age of 18, suffer from anxiety and related disorders. As many people are effected by this type of mental illness, it is likely that you will come into contact with someone through work, personal life, or it could impact you directly. While anxiety disorders are treatable, the ADAA states that only 36.9% of those suffering from an anxiety disorder will receive some form of treatment.
As we move through the holidays and head into the new year, it could be a stressful time for individuals dealing with anxiety. Work could have added stress at this time of year as deadlines for end of year activities is coming to an end and new goals will begin with the new year. Extra time off of work can be relaxing while away from the office but stress can be amplified when we feel like there is even more work to be completed when we return.
We expect a certain amount of stress at work and even at home. But consistent, "excessive, and irrational anxiety that interferes with everyday functioning is often an indication of an anxiety disorder,” according to the ADAA. Fifty-six percent of American workers say stress and anxiety effects their workplace performance. And over three-fourths say that work stress carries over into their personal life. And one of the biggest culprits of work stress is deadlines with 55% percent of workers citing deadlines as the main stressor.
As we begin the new year, take steps to deal with stress and anxiety. Whether you need help managing or you know someone who needs help in handling their own stress. The ADAA offers some tips:
- Accept that you cannot control everything.
- Do your best – do not aim for perfection, instead work to your best ability and be proud of what you can accomplish.
- Maintain a positive attitude.
- Learn what triggers your anxiety – Can you identify what triggers your stress and anxiety? Learning how to manage stress starts with knowing what causes it.
- Limit alcohol and caffeine – Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. Alcohol and caffeine can cause anxiety disorders.
- Eat well-balanced meals – Having a well balanced diet can be healthy for your physical body and your mental health. Limiting excess sugars keeps you energy more level throughout the day.
- Get enough sleep – It has become more common that individuals do not get enough sleep every night. Prioritize your sleep and aim for eight hours each night. Sleeps helps move stress hormones through your system and restores energy.
- Exercise daily – Even a small amount of stretching can be beneficial. Aim to get up and move throughout the day to maintain health. And taking a walk outside can help relieve stress. Daily exercise can be a great chance for self care.
Just as we prioritize work and deadlines, we need to prioritize time for managing our stress and anxiety. Take time to care for yourself so you can be at your best level to serve others. Consider making this a goal for the new year, it will be worth it.
One Team. One Vision. One Goal. – Everyone Goes Home Safe!