Ways to Stay in Control

With all of the stresses of modern life, it’s easy to feel as if you’re losing control. When you add the pressure of work, whether that be as an employer or employee, it can be even more difficult. Fortunately, there are ways in which you can take back control and feel less overwhelmed.

Obviously, tackling stress can offer a wealth of health benefits, both physically and mentally. However, research has also found that there is a strong relationship between stress and productivity. Some stress can help to motivate and improve performance, but this only goes so far. Once workers get too stressed, productivity plummets, having a detrimental effect on daily working life.

It would be impossible to remove all uncertainty and stress from your life, but the trick is to change the way you react to it. There are a number of ways in which you can change your relationship with stress and approach uncertainty with a calmer disposition.

Stay Healthy

It may seem like an obvious suggestion but maintaining a healthy lifestyle is one of the best building blocks for fighting stress. Healthy can be quite a relative term but in general, good food, exercise and adequate sleep is the ideal. It’s also important to look after mental health just as much as physical health, particularly when it comes to stress. Trying to stay healthy will help you to become more resilient and less vulnerable to feelings of losing control.

Be Prepared

Work environments can be unpredictable, but you can make some general preparations. Planning ahead can provide security and assurance that you will know how to handle the majority of situations. Whether this preparation involves timetables, itineraries, background information on the business itself or even just mental exercises about how you will react in specific scenarios, every plan can help. Obviously, we can’t prepare for every eventuality but covering the basics can ease insecurity.

Take a Break

When it comes to the sources of stress, you can’t usually remove them altogether, but you can choose to avoid them, if only temporarily. When you have multiple responsibilities, both personal and business, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed and therefore, taking a break can help to alleviate this pressure. This could mean something as simple as turning your phone off for an hour, having a no-screen day or taking a walk around the local park. However, it’s worth noting that there are instances where a longer break can be required, for example time away from the office, whether that be days or weeks.


It can be easy to slip into a negative mindset, particularly if you work in a high-stakes environment. What would normally be considered daily tasks can suddenly take on greater importance, increasing anxiety and potentially leading to a loss in perspective. Try not to catastrophise or focus on worst case scenarios. If you feel like your positivity is slipping, remind yourself of past successes and try to channel that energy into your current work.

Obviously, for some people, a negative mindset can be a symptom of a mental health problem, such as anxiety or depression. If you think you have a problem, this is the time to ask for help. Talking can be incredibly therapeutic, whether it be with a loved one, colleague or even your boss.


We are social animals and there is a wealth of research that shows that regular socialising has a beneficial effect on many aspects of our lives. Create a space in your schedule for socialising, whether it be a large event or just chatting on the phone with a friend, every little helps. You could also take up a new hobby or volunteer for a charity. Any sort of activity away from work and home life can help to boost the mood.

Everyone feels like they have lost control at some point in their lives. Fortunately, there are ways in which to guard against this and ensure that you feel secure, confident and fully in control.