Productivity Ninja Task: Recognize your Stress Areas

9/11/2018 |

Your Productivity Ninja skills will certainly help you to feel less stressed, but let’s face it – stress in one form or another, will always be a part of our lives. How we deal with stress, however, is crucial and something we can continuously get better at. The first step in doing so is certainly recognizing what is causing us stress and how that stress is portrayed, so we can use everything we learned in various time management workshops to lessen the impact on our productivity and, most importantly, our wellbeing. 

We don’t always spend enough of our time on our own wellbeing and happiness, so let us set you a little task:

TASK: Recognize your Stress areas
Pen and Paper
15 minutes


Productivity Checklist


Some Background

The British Health and Safety Executive, the Government body responsible for ensuring high standards of health and safety at work, has issued guidelines to help employers to minimize the stress they cause to employees.
The broad headings that employers are asked to focus on are all things that the psychological contract between employer and employee is built upon.

These are:

  • Demands
  • Control
  • Support
  • Role
  • Relationships
  • Change

There is often crossover between these areas.


Productivity Ninja Balance


The Task

Working through the 6 stress areas, think how each of these manifest themselves in your life and write them down on a piece of paper.

  1. Demands – for example: targets, deadlines, financial responsibilities, etc. 
  2. Control – for example:  health issues, new routines, etc. 
  3. Support – for example: unreliable staff, technology issues, etc. 
  4. Role – for example: not understanding duties, moral dilemmas, etc. 
  5. Relationships – for example: domestic issues, challenging friendships/co-workers, etc. 
  6. Change – for example: redundancy, change in legislation, recession, etc.

Don’t forget  – sometimes these areas overlap – don’t worry if that happens. If there are multiple areas and factors which are causing you stress at the moment – don’t worry, we’ve all been there – give the different causes a rating from 1 to 5, with 1 being the least stressful and 5 being the most stressful. That way you’ll know which areas to prioritize.


Productivity Ninja To Do List


The main job is done – you’ve recognized the areas and parts of your life which are causing you stress at the moment. Now it’s time to activate those Productivity Ninja skills and put yourself and your wellbeing first. On your piece of paper, mark down possible solutions for each stress areas. For example: If you’re feeling stressed about looming deadlines, think: Are there any other projects that can be put on hold while you’re working to meet your deadlines? Could you speak to your line manager to shift priorities and help you organize your day to day work?


By Hannah Urbanek
Hannah is Think Productive’s Head of Marketing and the voice behind our social media and editorial content. You can connect with Hannah directly here or on LinkedIn.


Before You Go...

Is your team increasingly feeling overwhelmed, distracted or overall feeling under pressure to juggle productivity and wellbeing? Our full day ‘How to be a Productivity Ninja’ workshop will help your whole team to overcome information overload, how to manage your attention and so much more. Most of all, you will all leave the session feeling less stressed and more focused.


This post was originally published in October 2012 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

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