How to Reduce Stress During the Busiest Times of the Year

The summer is a busy time for the dental community. This increased workload is oftentimes accompanied by a heightened stress level.

Overwhelmed employees experience reduced productivity and can exhibit increased in blood pressure, suppressed immune system, increased risk of heart attack and stroke, and an accelerated aging process.

Increase your practice’s productivity and keep your employees happy and healthy with these 5 stress reducing tactics.

1) Prioritize tasks, create lists, and delegate

Create a list of your tasks and break them down into more manageable chunks. Then prioritize them so you can determine what you should focus on first. Finally ask yourself are you the best person to be doing this task? Is there someone more qualified that could get this done more efficiently (internally or externally) that has the time and resources to help you accomplish your goal?

It’s easy to become overwhelmed by focusing on too many things at once. Focus on accomplishing one thing at a time and you will be more effective and less stressed.

2) Take a break (even if it’s for only a moment)

Taking a break, however small, will help you refocus on the task at hand and be more effective. It also leads to higher job satisfaction. Read more about this phenomenon and 4 break methods to try in Fast Company’s article “Why You Need To Stop Thinking You are Too Busy To Take Breaks”.

3) Do something to make you smile and laugh

Smiling and laughing are physiologically good for you, not to mention that they’ll make your work environment more enjoyable. Smiling releases endorphins, which will increase your work satisfaction, while laughing lowers cortisol. High cortisol levels can lead to impaired cognitive performance decreasing both your and your employees’ effectiveness. This can be as silly as jumping in the elevator like you were a kid or watching a cute cat video on youtube.com

4) Put it in perspective & be grateful

It’s likely that whatever is stressing you out isn’t life altering. Ask yourself how will the worst case scenario affect your life in 1 week, 1 month, 1 year, and 10 years from now? Often times imagining the worst helps you move past it. So does taking a moment to be grateful. If you are stressed because your practice is so busy, take a minute to realize that a busy office means that your business is thriving! Ask yourself what are the positive happening in your life? Are you healthy, do you have a roof over your head, are you gainfully employed? There are probably many people who envy the position you are in. Taking a moment to gain perspective can do a lot.

5) Let music guide your mood

Upbeat music can boost your mood simply can boost your mood according to scientists at the University of Missouri. “Soothing tunes foster the release of serotonin, a hormone that fosters happiness and a general sense of well-being. It also flushes the body with dopamine, a neurotransmitter that makes you feel good. Music also paves the way for the release of norepinephrine, a hormone that brings about euphoria and elation” according to Examined Existence’s article on “How Music Changes your Mood”.

To get you started, here are “7 CDs to Help You Relax and Relieve Stress”.

 

**Originally posted on OMS Specialists eNewsletter on June 23, 2016**

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