If the atmosphere at work is negative and tense, then the workers are often unfocused and overwhelmed. Don’t let yourself fall victim to the harmful effects of stress: use these tips to relieve tension and get re-focused.

Take a Deep Breathe

Breathing calms down the nerves and re-focuses your mind. By closing your eyes and taking a few minutes for yourself you can easily take your stress level down a few notches. There are helpful apps that train people how to correctly breathe during meditation and relaxation that could help you.

Be Thankful

Spending a few moments thinking of all the things you are thankful for will relieve stress and make you more accepting of a few difficulties. Just draw your window shades, relax and list all the things that you are thankful for in your life. Therapists and psychiatrists often recommend this exercise to help depressed and anxious people realize all of the good things that surround a few negative things at work. For example, you might have two great friends in the office, cold water in the cooler, and a boss who doesn’t nag you: when you realize all of that a missed deadline doesn’t seem so bad.

BYOD (Bring Your Own Dog)

Bringing pets to work has been proven as an effective method to relieve stress in all workers and create a better atmosphere. Many bosses get an office dog to keep everyone cheerful, and some workplaces allow people to bring their trained dogs to work. Consider asking your boss about this policy. If your boss declines, you can always consider a pet beta fish for your desk. Fish are proven to relieve stress and make observers calmer.

Run to Lunch

Remember to take every break in order to stay calmer. Also, try to get in some exercise. For example, you could do a few lunges during a 15-minute break, or jog in place to work-out your tension. Some people like to take their lunch hour at the gym so that they can run for 30 minutes or do a yoga session. Exercise relieves stress quickly, and helps us to burn fats and calories.

Be Outgoing

Sometimes when you do nice things for others it relieves stress and makes you happier. It makes you think positive. Something as simple as baking cookies for your co-workers could make you feel happy all day, make your co-workers more cheerful, and lead to people complimenting you or chatting with you all afternoon long. When you do nice things for others they often reciprocate, too, so you could find yourself gifted with a sweet a few weeks later when you need a pick-me-up. Here are some other ways to do random acts of kindness:

  • Draw friendly co-worker caricatures on the meeting room white board to make others laugh and smile
  • Give an anonymous thank you card to someone overlooked
  • Help a teammate with a difficult task, even if it’s after hours

Take care of yourself at work and at home with these stress relieving activities. It will make you feel healthier and more in-control of your own life. Also, remember that sometimes the ultimate stress reliever is helping others to feel less stressed.