“No pressure, no diamonds,” goes the saying.
A bit of stress can go a long way in the workplace, many an old-school boss would have you believe.
Health experts disagree and say anyone working in high-pressure conditions should be aware of the long-term risks and take countermeasures.
While stress is normal in everyday professional life, it’s also unhealthy in the long run as it puts the body on high alert by releasing lots of hormones.
If this condition becomes permanent, you can expect some combination of high blood pressure, back tension and a sleep disorder to hit you sooner or later.
Anyone who feels stressed can consciously lower their body’s state of emergency with some exercise, says Dr Ingo Froboese, a professor of sports health at the Cologne Sports University in Germany.
As an immediate measure against stress, he recommends a brisk walk around the block or a few quick sprints up and down the stairs if you need something more intense.
Does this really help with stress?
Intensive physical activity is stimulating for the body, which means that once this activity is over, the body and mind need to naturally relax, which will help you calm down more easily.
Instead of a spontaneous workout, you can also try deep breathing, preferably with your eyes closed.
Magnesium, which you can find in bananas, also helps against stress in the short term.
In the long term, however, permanently stressed people should organise their lives in such a way that high-pressure situations don’t arise often.
Even if you can’t change your lifestyle, it’s still important to get regular sleep and physical activity, while allowing yourself some time for short breaks.
Dr Froboese recommends a 5-10 minute break every 90 minutes. – dpa
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