How to Deal with Anxiety at Work

Work-life balance is an important part of our day-to-day lives that we all strive for. Finding time for yourself amid a busy schedule can be difficult. No matter what kind of job you have, feeling anxious to meet deadlines is something many people have to deal with. The pressures of then keeping to those deadlines can just add to the anxiety. 

We’ve all been there. Anxiety in the workplace can affect you negatively in the long run if you don’t find ways to deal with it. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed at work, here are some tips and practices to manage stress and anxiety better. 

Anxiety Around Superiors 

If you find yourself getting anxious around your boss or other higher-ups at your company, try to also remember that those were the people who hired you! Trust in yourself and your ability to do good work, rather than if your boss is watching. Taking the focus off of what is causing you anxiety and placing it on something that makes you feel positive is a great way to change perspective quickly and help you relax. Try mediating with positive affirmations.

Anxiety Around Coworkers

For some people, workplace stress can be related to social anxiety. This can have to do with feelings of self-worth, the ability to work with and collaborate with others, or for some, just being around a lot of people. Try not to feel pressured to interact with others more than you have to if you're feeling overwhelmed. That can help calm the nerves slightly. 

Managing anxiety can be more difficult in these cases, as the person may be more focused on their feelings rather than their work. It is best to employ some exercises that will counter work-related stress, so that you can be prepared.  You can try a 3 minute breathing exercise (breathwork) to restore your body to a calmer state.

Anxiety Just Because

We get it. There are times when everything is perfect but we just can’t help but feel stressed out or anxious about something. If this is the case, it helps to have something at your desk that you can anchor a sense of relaxation to. It can be something you hold, wear, or smell. 

Smell is one of our under utilized senses, and is intrinsically linked to breath. For something to keep at your desk and use throughout the day, try our Breathe Essential Oil Roller. The best way to deal with anxiety is to be prepared. 

If you prefer to use something you can hold or wear to help ground you, amethyst crystals are great for reducing anxiety.  

Take a Breath

Most of the time, the best way to slow down your anxiety at work is to take a quick, short break. Breathing exercises are perhaps one of the best options in such a situation. You can do them right at your desk, as often as you like, without anyone knowing. Breathwork exercises often have immediate effects on the mind and body, and can help realign your sense of focus. Taking the time to reset your breathing and focus acts directly on your parasympathetic nervous system, calming your nerves and in turn your mind.

man doing breathwork exercise

In general, incorporating breathwork into your daily and weekly routine will help you maintain composure, relaxation, and focus at work, as well as mitigate any stressful situations that may arise. Don't be discouraged if you can’t do this consistently or for very long at first. Like any practice it takes time. Working with a breathwork practitioner can help you learn age-old techniques the right way, so that you can start using them immediately. 

One of the most well known breathing techniques is box breathing. This involves taking equal deep breaths in and out, with pauses in between. You can incorporate this with a visualization of four sides of a box or whatever else helps you stay focused. Go ahead and try this now to notice an immediate difference.

  • Empty out all of the air from your lungs to the count of four.
  • Hold your lungs empty for a count of four.
  • Inhale deeply for a count of four.
  • Hold your lungs full for a count of four.
  • Repeat as many times as you feel like.

Take a Break

People with anxiety may choose to do one of our mini meditations during their break or at the beginning or end of each workday. These guided mini meditations can be a great reminder that you can repeat for yourself multiple times throughout the day. They will help you with improving your mood, calming your nerves, or boosting your energy level at the end of a long day. By taking more targeted breaks throughout the day, dealing with anxiety at work becomes a little bit easier. 

In Closing

Sometimes, we just need to slow down and remember that we already have most of the tools for how to deal with anxiety at work. Our breath is there to center us and to keep us grounded. Bringing ourselves back to this fundamental process has immediate effects on our nervous systems. 

Anxiety at work is common and these issues affect people of all kinds all over the world. Anxiety can also help us notice dangers. However, expressions of fear when there is no inherent danger may lead to a disorder. Dealing with anxiety and depressive disorder are amongst the most common problems of working Americans. In fact, these disorders are so common that they are protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

While this information is not intended as medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, medical reviewers worldwide have found anxiety to be related to heart disease and other disorders. No matter how much anxiety you have, you can always benefit from reducing it, but make sure to seek a doctor’s advice for any serious medical conditions.

If you would like to bring wellness and anxiety reducing techniques to your company, please get in touch with us at