What is Occupational Stress?

The physiological and physical effects of negative activity in the workplace as a result of many factors including external events, internal events, job demands and colleague behaviour.

Occupational stress refers to the physical, mental, and emotional strain experienced by individuals in relation to their work. It occurs when the demands of a job exceed a person's ability to cope with or manage them effectively. Occupational stress can arise from various factors, including high workloads, time pressures, long working hours, a lack of control over one's work, inadequate resources or support, conflicts with colleagues or superiors, organizational changes, and job insecurity.

The experience of occupational stress can vary from person to person, as individuals respond differently to work-related pressures. However, prolonged or excessive exposure to stressors can have negative effects on both an individual's well-being and their job performance. It can lead to physical symptoms such as headaches, fatigue, digestive issues, and sleep disturbances. It can also contribute to mental health problems such as anxiety, depression, and burnout.

Organizations recognize the importance of managing and reducing occupational stress to promote employee well-being and productivity. Strategies to address occupational stress can include providing adequate resources and support, improving job design and work-life balance, fostering a positive work environment, promoting effective communication and conflict resolution, offering stress management programs or counseling services, and encouraging healthy lifestyle practices.

It is worth noting that while some level of stress can be motivating and drive individuals to perform better, excessive or chronic occupational stress can have detrimental effects on both the individual and the organization. Therefore, it is crucial to identify and address the sources of stress in the workplace to promote a healthy and productive work environment.