14 Nov How to cope up with stress in life?
Right from my school days, I actually had a problem of getting stressed about every small thing in life and never could cope up with it. I used to prepare very well for exams. But before I used to appear for exams, I used to get all worked up about the questions that could be asked and then whatever I studied would get lost in thin air.
What if I am not able to answer all the questions correctly?
I have a very bad handwriting and I always used to get worried about what if the examiner isn’t able to comprehend what I write. After giving my exams, I used to be stressed about the grade I would get; worried if I had attempted all questions completely or had skipped any part.
What if I don’t get good grades?
But now when I look back, I laugh at these things. This is because when you enter the real world which is the corporate world, you realize that whatever you faced was actually nothing as compared to what you are facing now and will face in the future. During the last few months of my college, I used to be very stressed about what kind of job will I get and in what company. I was happy when I got the job but by salary gave me stress. It was quite less as compared to what my friends were getting. Thus, I used to be stressed about how less I am earning. Honestly, I am very brand conscious and I used to be stressed about how I would afford all the luxury with such a low salary. That happiness of getting a job went out of the window the moment I let my low salary stress me.
What if I am never able to earn well?
When I started going to the office, there were already two girls working in my department. Since I already had 3 months of freelance experience, they got insecure about their position and I could see that in their behavior. I am a reserved person and when I got the job I said to myself that I will interact with my colleagues. But their behavior made me not want to talk to them. But, I guess this isn’t how the office works. I had to talk to them from time to time. However, their insecure behavior troubled me a lot.
What if my colleagues don’t appreciate my work?
Another reason for my stress at work was my manager. She did not allot me any work for more than a month. When I asked her for some project, she gave me some work which looked totally irrelevant. But she was my manager and I had no other option but to do it. So I did it. But it did frustrate me. I went home dissatisfied. Within a week I began to wonder what I was doing at my job.
Would it really help me grow or have just the opposite reaction?
After a few days, I realized my manager actually knew nothing and was at that position because she was a sycophant. This irritated me a lot and I began to regret my decision of taking up a job in this company. I started having sleepless nights regarding what I will do now. I thought of quitting the job but then people would have started questioning my abilities. The common answer I used to get whenever I talked to someone about this was this is how corporate world works. So I was scared that if I quit now, people will think of me as incompetent which I would never want. So I continued working there. I was never given work according to my capabilities but I did it anyways because I had no other option.
What if I quit my job?
All this made me think all day. I was stressed and my mother could see that on my face. But I never told anything to anyone. I started searching for ways to fight stress at work and came across mindfulness. I researched about it and I really liked its concept. I thought of giving it a try. Since mindfulness is a form of meditation which can be practiced anywhere, I started practicing in between my work. It helped me stay calm whenever my colleagues did not behave well with me or my manager gave some useless work or no work at all. I used to find a quiet corner and focus only on breathing.
I also practiced it while eating my food. It helped me enjoy my food. Otherwise, I used to eat while thinking about my work, manager and colleagues and hence could never enjoy my meal. I focused only on my food and rejoiced every bite of it. Practicing mindful meditation also helped me sleep better. Just focusing on my breath helped to manage my thoughts and never let myself succumb to negativity. My days began to go well at work. It took away the insecurity of being called a loser and helped me think clearer about what I want. It helped me make better decisions. I realized it was important to do what you love and actually enjoy doing it. So, I started applying for other jobs because I never got the job satisfaction in this company.
Mindfulness also taught me to be patient. So, I patiently waited for responses from other companies. I knew it was going to be tough and I did not have much experience. I also knew that leaving a company in less than 3 months of joining would impact my resume negatively. I accepted these facts and still chose to apply for other companies. This was all possible because of mindfulness. It brought positivity in my life and gave me strength and courage. I proved by abilities with whatever work I was given and then asked my manager to give me work as was promised to me. Well, she did listen to me and allotted me a project for which I was hired. It certainly did bring negative reactions from my colleagues but I managed to handle them all because of mindfulness.
While all this was happening, I got a call from a company for which I always wanted to work but was rejected in the last round of the recruitment process. I got disheartened but I accepted it easily. I am still looking for other jobs with a positive outlook.
In the end, I can say that every working professional undergoes stress at work. With mindfulness, they can gain enough strength to deal with that stress. It helps them to calm their mind and think better. It helps them to focus on all the positive things that motivate them to survive instead of quitting. I am telling this with my own experience and not on the basis of what I have heard. Mindfulness helped me rejoice every moment and made me worry less.
Whenever you feel life isn’t going well, stop and breathe.
Purva is a freelance writer from Udaipur, India. She covers a wide range of topics including health, lifestyle, news, food, and travel. You can reach out to her at firstname.lastname@example.org