Ease your job stress today with mindfulness


JOB STRESS IS SOMETHING we are all familiar with. A report that must be completed tomorrow; a presentation which must blow away that all important client next week; a business trip that must result in long-term contracts – we are used to experiencing stress, and every day we work through a huge list of urgent tasks.

Job stress in figures

In the US 75% of employees and business owners suffer from burnout or chronic stress. 48% report their stress to have increased significantly over that past 5 years. 48% say that stress causes them to fight with people close to them. All in all job stress costs 300 billion USD per year due to absenteeism and physical and mental medical care.

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Download my free ebook and discover how my no-nonsense mindfulness approach can help you keep job stress at bay. You’ll feel more balanced and resilient within just a week.

Meet the job stress veteran

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Hi, my name is Marisa Garau and I help people around the world to effectively deal with work stress.

For many years I ran my own advertising agency and ignored the stress that came with my job. I was always working against deadlines, arranging for meetings with clients, keeping my team on top of their game, and doing all the extra tasks that come with leading a company.

When I burned out, I decided I couldn’t keep undermining my health and changed tack. I followed the mindfulness training and started a new life as mindfulness teacher. I now inspire thousands of people worldwide with my meditation-free, down-to-earth mindfulness approach.

Tip: this in-depth work stress article offers valuable insights into the root causes and the impact of stress. Plus some unorthodox but highly effective tips to combat job stress.

Job stress causes you to develop tunnel vision

When feeling pressured and stressed, we develop tunnel vision. We are being totally overwhelmed by our problems, and can’t see a way out. The tunnel is dark and endless.

You can move forward to the bright light at the end of the tunnel by understanding that the dinosaur part of the human brain loves to worry and loves to keep you scared and stressed. It’s just what it does.

Your thoughts are not your most reliable informants
What you, as the owner of that brain, should do to deal effectively with your prehistoric brain part is understand that the voice is your head is not telling you the truth, no matter how real its horror stories seem to be.

  • So no… despite the horrific description you won’t actually die when you don’t meet that ‘dead’line

  • No, you won’t get fired on the spot when you tell your managers she is crossing your boundaries

  • No, you won’t end up in the gutter when you change careers

  • And no… your children won’t starve when you give up your boring job

… nor are they your most reliable advisors

Thoughts are just thoughts, they are not real. Observe that these thoughts are always the same, always telling you the same frightening stories, always putting you down, always telling you to remain in the hamster wheel where life is predictable and safe.

Do mindfulness today: replace worry-thoughts with solution-thoughts

Realise that repeat thoughts about future disasters don’t help you to move forward, but only keep you stuck in that dark tunnel. So why take these unhelpful thoughts so seriously? They are not the truth anyway. Replace these sabotaging thoughts by thinking of practical solutions to your most current issues. In short: use your brain power to solve job stress issues, not to chew on old, useless thoughts that keep you scared and paralysed.

Job stress causes you to think there will be a reward

When we experience job stress and exhaustion, what keeps us going is the promise of a great reward once we reach our future end result. We believe that once we have completed our work project, we will be perfectly happy for the rest of our lives.

There is no ‘once I’m over the hump’
Unfortunately, things are quite different in real life. Because when your major project is finally completed, you’re already deeply involved into the next major project. And so you’ll actually never get to enjoy this rose-colored reward of sunny satisfaction at the end of the deadline tunnel.

The reality of life consists of an endless stream of important and less important intertwined tasks, without the clear beginnings and endings you so long for. There is no end to it. Each tasks bleeds into the next one and will keep you busy every single day.

You can’t change life… but you can change your attitude
It’s a reality you can’t change. But what you can change, is your attitude and expectations. You must let go of the end result and that promise of fulfilment, happiness and relaxation once the work is done… since the work is never really done anyway.

Do mindfulness today: accept that life will keep happening

Think at all those future projects, tasks and assignments which will undoubtedly cross your path in the coming years and decades. It’s a massive amount of work out there in the future, waiting for you to be taken on… far too much to get your head around now. Understand that this is your life: an endless series of events which will demand your attention and energy, just as the waves in the ocean will keep forming. There is no end to it. Understand that there doesn't need to be an end to it. Life will always go on, just like projects will come and go. Let go of the expectation that one day you'll be on top of your work and all your projects. Accept that something will always be going on, whether you stress about it or not. Relax within that knowledge.

Job stress causes you to impatiently focus on the end result

Job stress not only causes tunnel vision, but also an unhealthy focus on a projected end result. Compare it to being on a boat and staring through binoculars, wishing you were in the harbour already… while all around the boat dolphins, seals and whales are frolicking in the water. You can’t see the beauty around you because you’re only focussing on that one goal which promises you that only there you’ll find perfect inner peace and happiness.

… and miss out on the beauty of the journey
As long as you’re only looking through binoculars to find that all-important harbour, you are simply missing the big picture. Life is a journey, not just a series of destinations such as end results and rewards. While you stare through the binoculars, you miss the beauty of life around you.

Stop hurrying — allow yourself the gift of time
When feeling stressed while doing your job, you feel restless and impatient. Time goes too fast… or doesn’t go fast enough. While in reality, life has its own tempo. Your emotional and professional growth has its own tempo. And your project has its own tempo. Your impatience is not going to change this ageless principle. The more precious energy you waste on getting through your project as quickly as possible, the slower it seems to move. You must have noticed that hurrying and multitasking never got you the results you were after. It’s because every creature and every thing needs time in order to develop, grow, and blossom.

Of course you are free to take up the binoculars to check if the harbour is in sight already. But don’t forget to put the binoculars away regularly and allow yourself to look around and experience life in all its beauty and grandness. Now.

Do mindfulness today: enjoy all the goodness of life now

Think about the project that you are working on now. Consciously decide that you live now. Decide that there are dolphins now, and seals, and whales playing around your boat who all deserve to be noticed. Decide that you can enjoy all the goodness of life now. Accept your project as it is, with ups and downs, with hopes and fears. Now let go of your blind striving. Let go of your job stress. Let go of your impatience to rid yourself from the project as quickly as possible. Realise that the beauty of life lies in the journey, not in the destination. It's your attitude that will make this journey boring and exhausting – or interesting, exciting, and full of valuable lessons. Simply do your work with dedication, making certain that your project offers quality. This is trusting life itself, which always completes its projects right on time. Never too early, never too late. The flower blossoms when the flower is ready for it, without the need of your interference, impatience, and stressful expectations.

Marisa x


Download my new ebook for free. With my unique approach you’ll learn how to avoid job stress and become more resilient, focussed and emotionally balanced. 

Marisa Garau