Rachel was in charge of keeping things running smoothly at her company, taking care of employees’ wellbeing and managing all the people stuff. But little did Rachel know that the daily pressures and unexpected challenges would start to take a toll on her.
Every day, Rachel found herself caught in a web of miscommunication. Everyone had a different idea about their roles and what they should prioritise. This caused confusion and made it hard for her to keep everything organised and on track.
To make matters worse, Rachel often felt let down by her colleagues. She had certain expectations, but they weren’t always met. It left her uncertain and frustrated, not knowing if she could rely on them when she needed their support.
One of the biggest headaches for Rachel was dealing with her boss. Sometimes, their behaviour was unpredictable and inconsistent. It made her feel like she was walking on eggshells, unsure of what to expect or how to please them.
As if that wasn’t enough, Rachel had many tasks to tackle. The constant stream of meetings, emails, and requests piled up, making her days feel never-ending. It seemed like there was always more to do than she could handle.
Outside of work, Rachel had her own personal responsibilities to juggle. The demands of her job spilt over into her home life, causing stress and imbalance. Finding time for herself or taking care of her wellbeing was hard.
All these pressures took a toll on Rachel’s self-confidence, making her doubt her worth and abilities. She started questioning her control over her own life and career. She felt she was constantly tested, and it was hard to maintain a sense of stability and purpose.
Pressure and stress. We are all vulnerable to them, yet how often do you get carried away looking for the big stressors in your lives when it’s not those you should be looking for. Instead, it’s the relentless accumulation of unnoticed small events that do – It’s the hidden toll of microstress.
What are Microstresses?
Microstresses are the small, everyday stressors we encounter in our lives. While each microstresses may seem relatively minor, the cumulative effect of many microstresses can add up over time and take a toll on our mental and physical health.
The thing is Microstress doesn’t trigger the normal stress response in our brains to help us deal with it. Instead, it embeds itself in our minds and accumulates daily, one microstress on top of the other. The long-term impact can be debilitating.
Microstresses - How many of these do you encounter daily?
- Misalignment between collaborators on their roles or priorities
- Uncertainty about others’ reliability (expectations of others not met)
- Unpredictable behaviour from a person in a position of authority
- Collaborative demands that are diverse and high in volume (Meetings, emails etc.)
- Surges in responsibilities at work or home
- Managing and feeling responsible for the success and wellbeing of others
- Confrontational conversations
- Lack of trust in your network
- People who spread stress
- Political manoeuvring
- Pressure to pursue goals out of sync with your values
- Attacks on your sense of self-confidence, worth, or control
- Draining or otherwise negative interactions with family or friends
- Disruptions to your network
How many do you encounter daily?
I’m assuming many; so how do you ensure you perform and maintain good wellbeing and mental health when faced with these microstresses? How do you bounce forward rather than cope with these daily demands? How do you ensure you support those around you at work and home?
If you do recognise that you are faced with some of these microstreses daily, the three resources below are a great place to start:
Listen, Watch, Learn
Is pressure and stress the same thing, or two different things? Listen as David talks you through a fundamental resilience skill – knowing the difference between pressure and stress. The video is taken from our online training which will be available to anyone really soon!
Karen Dillon and Rob Cross reveal not only how to identify your microstresses but also what impact they are having on your co-workers, family, and friends. They delve into strategies you can take to keep a sense of perspective and enjoy the moment more. Get ready for lots of actionable tips to get a grip on your microstress:
Managers oversee a team’s work and ensure they meet their deadlines. Depending on your work environment, this responsibility can be stressful and rewarding. Read here about the five skills managers (or anyone) can use to manage stress.
💭 Finally, a quote to get you thinking
Until next time,
From your friends at Resilience Development Co,