“The time to relax is when you don’t have time for it.”– Sydney J. Harris

An average Nigerian work 9 hours/day, 47 hours /week and we barely have time to rest, we are always in a hurry to get things done, in a hurry even on the highway. The question that comes to mind is: Why the hurry? Where are we really rushing to?

But how many times do we take out time to check our health or even rest, slow down to think and not overwork ourselves. The Nigerian watch revealed that  75% of Nigerians fall sick due to work stress. We visit hospitals most times when the ailment is at a critical stage and often times most ailment are work stress related because we do not take out time to relax. We rather just get drugs from a roadside pharmacy when we have the slightest symptoms, thereby worsen the case that ought to have a proper diagnosis.

Every job has stress and at some point we feel the work pressure and this stress can occur in different forms like trying to fulfill a challenging obligation or trying to meet a deadline. But when work stress persist then this can be harmful to our health. Work stress can contribute to health issues such as headache, sleep disorder, difficulty in concentrating, short temper, it can also weaken the immune system amongst other noticeable symptoms.

Record shows that some persons deal with stress using different unhealthy mechanisms ranging from abusing drugs and smoking or even taking alcohols, overeating or unhealthy eating and other unhealthy coping mechanisms.

From my personal observation, I discovered that more Doctors visit and serious illness are linked to work stress, most times instead of visiting the Hospital for a proper check up, most people just prefer to buy drugs from a roadside drug seller or we buy drugs from the chemist in our neighborhood not minding the fact that they are not trained.

My advice, according to psychologists, that we adopt some coping mechanisms like make the most of our break, even if it’s 10 minutes of our busy schedule and this have proven to help refresh our mental outlook, try to take a brief walk or just interact with colleagues and always walk away when you are angry (mental regroup) or my favorite, sit quietly with your eyes closed and take a deep breath.

We should also set reasonable standards, learn to work together with colleagues to achieve needed change in the organisation, also the overall productivity of the organisation will increase and this will improve our health as well.

Next time you are feeling stressed, take time to listen to your body, just rest and save yourself extra stress of hospital runs, a Philosopher said “To go slow is to go fast. I think that applies to everything in Life. We live as though there aren’t enough hours in the day but if we do each thing calmly and carefully we will get it done quicker and with less stress.”

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