07.08.2013

4 Ways to Avoid Stress When the Times Get Tough

By: Phil Burrows
Phil is an intern on the Consumer & Mass Business corporate communications team and will be regularly contributing content to the Residential News Center

In my first blog, I talked about some great ways to start off on the right foot and succeed when starting your internship or first job. Unlike the school year where you have ample time to prepare for that first day in September or know your professors won’t assign you projects for at least a week, a job is much different. You are often right smack in the middle of everything that’s going on whether it is meetings, projects or even a business trip. It can be overwhelming - take it all in when you really don’t have time to stop and take it in! This is when stress can bear down on you but, it doesn’t have to at all.

When you’re feeling stressed, here are 4 ways you can reduce that stressed-out feeling at your internship with your team while exceeding expectations!

Organize Yourself

Whether it’s managing email, meeting with team members, and projects landing on your lap left and right, you can start to feel the weight piling on your shoulders. One way to avoid this feeling is to be organized.  While this may seem old school compared to all of our digital calendars and alerts, each day make a hand written list of what you need to get accomplished. Being able to have that list to refer to with your own notes and being able to cross each item off is a rewarding feeling. It condenses “what you think you have to do” into a more manageable “What I know I have to do” which makes a huge difference.  Also, a rule that I live by is “If you have time to think about it, just do it.” Let’s face it, we’ve all procrastinated at times which can put unnecessary stress on us in the crunch.. By staying organized not only makes you work more efficiently and stress free but, shows your boss and team that you can handle bigger projects and higher responsibilities.

Take Some Time Doing Something You Enjoy

It can also be easy to fall into focusing on work 24/7. While this is not quite what you would think is a bad thing, when times get tough you can easily become stressed and even burnt out.  While you have to work hard, it’s important to take care of yourself. So do something that you truly enjoy or take part in a hobby when away from the office. If you’re the hockey person like me, there’s nothing better to clear my head then to lace up the skates and go play some puck after a long day at work.

Enjoy your Work; It’s not just a task!

Like Confucius once said “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” I’m sure we’ve all heard that 100 times and it sounds similar to that of Charlie Brown’s Teacher speaking to the class but, it’s true! It’s not a race to the finish when it comes to the work you have on your plate. The more you enjoy the work you’re doing, not only will it begin to seem less like a task but, it will be evident in your work and people will take notice.  When something seems like a task that we have to do, we often push it to the side or speed through it just to say it’s done but, if you take pride in the work you’re putting out and enjoy process, it makes your workload seem much less stressful. A perfect example is that you can always tell the difference between someone who wrote a paper just to finish the assignment and the person that really engaged in the topic and had fun in the process. That type of paper usually scores much higher and shows the students work ethic and passion. This believe it or not is the same at work. It’s advantageous not only to eliminate stress but, put out a great product.

Networking, Wait What?

While Networking may categorically seem like something that can’t relieve stress but, it actually can in a few ways. In today’s world of emails, it seems as if this is the only way we communicate anymore. When you seem lost in a sea of work or emails, sometimes just getting up and have a face to face conversation with someone or meeting someone new within the company can be a nice way to change up your everyday routine or a good distraction to keep away the stress. While networking and building relationships is good a great stress relief, it also presents a broader window of opportunities. By building relationships when you need help or have a question you will have someone to turn too which can be calming in situations where you may be overwhelmed. Not only that but, networking is what got me an internship with Verizon. So when you have the chance, step away from your email and go talk and meet new people!

While these 4 tips may all seem vastly different, together they make a difference when it comes to managing your work, staying stress free and, emerging as a leader on your team.  You never know whether your internship or position may lead to a full time job or promotion to a higher role so it is key to be able to stay cool under pressure and truly enjoy what you’re doing!

About the author(s): 

Phil is an external communications coordinator, supporting public relations and integrated marketing for Verizon. His responsibilities include creating new ways to engage with the FiOS consumer base and media, both nationally and locally. While he often writes about the latest FiOS news, he also enjoys networking and discussing how technology is fueling a change in our everyday lifestyle.