The American workforce is generally stressed out. There are deadlines to meet, sales expectations, lives to save and other priorities. You may love your job, but recovering from stressful days can be a tall task. So, how do you maintain health in a stressful job? This article lists five of the most stressful careers and how you can recover your mental health.
1. Health Care Worker
Make no mistake about it — since the COVID-19 pandemic started, health care workers have been on the front lines for those who contracted the virus. Hospitals saw surges of patients in addition to the ones already sick. A 2022 study reveals that most of the U.S. saw in-hospital mortality rates rise because of the pandemic.
Nurses nationwide often work long hours with 12-hour shifts. The days can be stressful, but there are ways to recover. After work, you can drink relaxing tea, sleep late and practice peaceful exercises like yoga. On your days off, you should set boundaries with your workplace. Building a wall between work and home means you don’t look at emails or group messages unless you’re on call.
Unfortunately, being an attorney is not as easy as Elle Woods makes it. A study by American Lawyer Media shows about one-third of lawyers experience symptoms of depression and more than 60% report they have anxiety. Legal work often pushes attorneys into stressful situations. Their career depends on winning cases and saving clients, with money and freedom on the line for many.
How do you maintain health in a stressful job like an attorney? One of the best ways to recover your mental health as an attorney is to take care of your body. The long hours and stressful situations can tax you. If your firm allows flexible scheduling, create a gap for something you look forward to. For example, you could work out at the gym for an hour to relieve stress healthily and stay focused afterward.
3. Cybersecurity Professional
Since the pandemic, the demand for cybersecurity professionals has risen significantly. COVID-19 brought about a surge in cyber theft through ransomware, malware and phishing attacks. Companies have started to beef up their information technology (IT) departments to protect themselves.
Though their market is rising, IT jobs can be stressful. Sometimes, cybersecurity professionals are responsible for large amounts of money. For example, one vulnerable sector during the pandemic is the health care industry. Data breaches in this sector cost over $10 million on average.
Stress can be high for IT workers. Increased demand means more load on employees, so try using automation to reduce the number of daily tasks. Many cybersecurity professionals use artificial intelligence for threat hunting, behavior analytics and more. After work, disconnect from your electronics, especially if you work from home. Create a barrier between work and recreation so you don’t feel like you’re in front of screens all day.
4. Construction Worker
Construction is a challenging industry because it’s among the most dangerous. About half of occupational injuries come from construction and jobs related to material moving. The industry has made excellent strides in protecting workers and it’s safer now than it was a century ago. Still, the job can be stressful.
Recovering from stressful days starts with building a network. You’re not alone in your struggles. Find other workers with similar experience and ask for their advice on maintaining health in a stressful job. Whether at work or home, remember to take advantage of your breaks. Encourage yourself and your co-workers to use every break, vacation and time off at their disposal. Use your time off to recharge your batteries on a weekend getaway or a weeklong vacation.
5. Social Worker
Many people underrate social work, but it’s integral to society. Social workers work daily to improve lives, especially those in impoverished conditions. The job can be gratifying because you get to help people, but the sector’s stress is high. Many social workers see the burdens people go through daily and feel powerless because of limited resources to help, leading to burnout.
How do social workers keep going despite the stress of the job? Many in the industry struggle with absorbing their clients’ struggles. Later, they may have flashbacks or a reminder of what they saw a family go through.
An excellent way to mitigate stress in social work and other industries is to find a third place. This location is outside your home and work and is a place to relax. It could be a coffee shop, park, library, church, club or gym. These facilities help you mentally detach from work and feel disconnected outside work hours.
Healthily Recover from Stressful Days
Stress often finds its way into the workplace no matter your occupation, but some jobs face extra stress and anxiety because of the workload. These stressful situations can quickly lead to burnout, so how do you maintain health in a stressful job? Use these tips to cope with stress in these five demanding careers.
Beth is the Managing Editor and content manager at Body+Mind. She shares knowledge on a variety of topics related to nutrition, healthy living, and anything food-related. In her spare time, Beth enjoys trying out new fitness trends and recipes.