All people experience some stress at work. It's normal. But is your boss so demanding, demeaning and dysfunctional that your stress level is reaching the danger point?
People who work in the land of bad bosses are hyper-stressed to volcanic proportions, ready to implode or explode at any moment. Your strong work ethic convinces you that you want to hang in there, hoping your boss will be fired or quits. Unfortunately, you could be hanging on forever, losing whatever sanity you have left. You're going to need more than the mantra 'At least I have a job' to deal with the stress more effectively.
A study was conducted with members of the surgical intensive care unit at Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. The nurses went through an eight-week mindfulness-based program that included stretching, yoga, meditation and music in the workplace. Stress level indicators went down by 40 percent.
"Our study shows that this type of mindfulness-based intervention in the workplace could decrease stress levels and the risk of burnout," reports Dr. Maryanna Klatt, professor of family medicine at Ohio State and one of the study's lead authors. "What's stressful about the work environment is never going to change. But what we were interested in changing was the nursing personnel's reaction to those stresses."
Your job itself may not have the life-or-death immediacy of a surgical intensive care unit, but if relaxation techniques could cut stress levels in that environment, surely the same techniques can help you cut the stress level of your bad boss environment.
You don't have to go into trance-like meditation to achieve mindfulness. All you need to do is look at whatever is going on, like your bad boss yelling at you, or demanding a totally impossible deadline, or vanishing just when you desperately need him or her to sign off on something--as neither good nor bad, just something that is. You’ve just released a whole load of stress. Now you can move forward into the problem-solution phase far more effectively and easily.