Dealing with work stress is a major challenge for many. We all understand that it is better not to stress. That you function better without stress and that you feel happier and better. Moreover, physical complaints due to stress are  less.

Dealing with work stress has a number of factors that play a role: First, the factors at work play a major role. Targets that must be achieved, difficult colleagues, dangerous work, high social pressure and supervisors are some of the factors that determine the amount of stress you have at work.

On the other hand, it is the environmental factors that play a role in the degree of work stress that you experience. Factors such as the family situation, a neighbor’s illness, a recession, etc. increase the burden on yourself, so that you experience more stress. The bucket is fuller and therefore overflows earlier.

Personal characteristics also determine the extent to which you experience work stress. If you have a perfectionistic approach, like to work very hard and get satisfaction from it, are always ready for everyone, do not settle for a mediocre result and want to motivate everyone, you have the chance to get more work stress.

Dealing with work stress 

Dealing with work stress means that you have to map these three factors for yourself and start responding to them.

You start a project and reach for a tool, only to realize you do not have it on hand. This is an annoying nuisance to many. When working around the home, most people do not want to stop what they are doing to run to the store to purchase a hand or power tool.

Keep track

By keeping an overview you ensure that work stress does not lead to an emotional mess. Keeping the overview means that you sometimes have to keep some distance from situations. This can be done in a literal or figurative (emotional) way.

Example: When a reorganization takes place, it can cause quite a bit of stress. It is okay to not be the most involved employee at such a moment when you notice that your home situation is starting to lead under the reorganization at work. 

Although this can lead to conflicting feelings (after all, you want to keep your job and therefore work extra hard), it is good to keep a suitable distance. This means that you are going to map out in a rational way what the reorganization entails, that you (usually) have little control over the choices that are made and that a reorganization will also pass.


Reflection will help you to separate main and side issues in your life. Sometimes you worry terribly about all sorts of trivialities. Things that are not relevant to extra happiness or pleasure.

Reflection will help you come up with: “What am I actually doing?”


Movement is crucial when dealing with work stress. Proper exercise ensures overall fitness, making you (preventively) more resistant to stress.

Moreover, movement causes the production of endorphins, so that the stress hormone cortisol is produced less. Movement therefore has a direct connection with getting less stress.


Good food counts as wood on a stove: Throw good wood on a stove and you sit long and warm. The wrong wood runs out quickly and burns poorly.

Give yourself good energy. Eat the good stuff. You don’t have to overdo it, but keep yourself away from takeaway meals, fast food and snacks. Eat what the ‘country has to offer’ (so turn in the summer, endive in the winter).

Rest / Relaxation

Rest and relaxation are important to get a good working-rest ratio. It is not bad to perform. It is bad to always perform without ensuring a good recovery .

A top skater cannot just keep skating in circles at maximum power. It stops somewhere. The body (and mind!) Must then recover.

Recovery of efforts (physical and mental) is done by doing two things: Sleep and relaxation.

Sleeping well means that you have a fixed sleep rhythm and that you spend long, healthy nights. Relaxation means that you do things that you are allowed to do. This can be that you read a book, take a relaxing walk, that you look at photos that you go cycling, etc.

Stop worrying

Although it is difficult, stopping worrying is very important to learn how to deal with work stress. Peak thoughts never come true. So the doom scenarios in your head don’t either. The terrible things that you see coming into your work never become reality.

The opposite of worrying is seeing everything from the sunny side. Sometimes this is a bit naive. However, by seeing the bright side, you often increase your creative abilities and thereby the solutions. Encouraging yourself to walk the right, positive path in your life helps to prevent a lot of work stress.

Accept that you do not have control over everything

Often it is desirable that you have influence on many things that happen. This can be very positive . You want to save someone from getting sick. Or you want to prevent the company for which you work from going bankrupt.

Yet the reality is that you cannot control everything. Sometimes things just happen. This unexpected makes life fun when you can accept it and let go. If you succeed, good (and less good) things will unexpectedly happen. It no longer causes you stress.

Take the lead yourself

Many people experience work stress because they are not in control of their own lives. Work dictates the lives of many. It has become a source of self-development. However, it is much more useful to get satisfaction from yourself than from work.

Taking control yourself means that you have to know who you are and in which direction you have to walk. This sometimes requires difficult choices. But did you know that not taking control is the main cause of burnout ? 

Dare to be unique

There is only 1 like you. At work there is nobody who is you. There may be people who look like you, but they will never be you! Comparing yourself with someone else makes little sense, let alone adapting to someone else or to a group.

You with your unique characteristics and qualities would do well to use this to the full. Adapting to someone else causes a lot of energy loss and therefore also work stress.

Apply structure 

Applying structure is not only good for people with autism . It is important for everyone. Research shows that people who have a fixed sleep rhythm sleep better and deeper and therefore wake up more rested. This means that you are in bed at set times and you get up at set times.

Applying structure ensures peace, confidence and regularity. You know where you stand and are better able to cope with unexpected influences.