Coping Strategies for Work-Related Stress

A businesswoman goes for a walk outside of her office building, one of the many coping strategies for work-related stress.

Everyone experiences work-related stress, but some industries, like pilots and doctors, might have unique subsets of work-related stress and, as such, need unique coping strategies. While it’s impossible to control or change work-related stress entirely, what you can control is the way you respond to it. Keep reading to explore coping strategies for work-related stress.

Work-related stress is any type of stress you experience as a direct result of your job. This can include:

  • Stress about being on time
  • Stress about a project
  • Stress relating to a deadline
  • Stress relating to other employees

There is no way to prevent stress entirely, but one of the things you can do is to learn appropriate coping strategies that help you control your response to it. By learning to control your response to stress, you can control the way it affects you.

If you are dealing with work-related stress there are several coping mechanisms and strategies you can use both in the middle of the day, and when you are done with your day.


Meditation is one of the most useful strategies for managing work-related stress. Meditation can take several forms.

  • If you are in the office and feeling overwhelmed or stressed, you can take a few minutes to follow a guided meditation at your desk or even outside
  • If you don’t have an office space you can turn to for privacy, you can still focus on returning to your breathing with walking meditation or moving meditation

For example:

Tom works on an assembly line, and every once in a while, his workplace stress becomes so overwhelming that he worries about overreacting in anger or using drugs and alcohol. So what he does to meditate is to focus on breathing in for four seconds, holding his breath for four seconds, breathing out for four seconds, and holding it at the bottom for four seconds. He can time this while working on the assembly line. 

Marcus works in landscaping and construction. When he gets overwhelmed he practices moving meditation, staying focused on his breathing while he times the breathing to every hammer strike or shovel dig.

Going Outside

For many people, just going outside and getting away from the source of the stress is a successful way to cope. If you are at work and you are dealing with stressful situations, it can help your mental clarity and improve your mood by simply stepping outside for a minute.

If you can, combine this with a short walk or sitting in an area that has natural elements such as trees or flowers to get a glimpse of nature.


Stretching can be another coping strategy for work-related stress that can be employed at any time. Often, when stressed, we hold physical tension in the body without realizing it. Progressive relaxation techniques and simple stretches like a forward fold or bringing your shoulders up to your ears and then dropping them can help you recognize where in your body you might be holding stress and then let it go.


Music can be a useful way to change your perspective and your mood. Consider making a playlist of songs that you find personally relaxing or uplifting and listen to a few minutes with headphones when you are stressed at work. This can even include listening to music when you step outside for a quick break.


Other coping strategies for work-related stress can include artwork. If you are struggling with things like anxiety, anxiety-based coloring books can be simple tools you keep in your desk or in your car or even on your person. These activities can provide stress relief in the moment. They can also be things that you do at home each day when you come back from the office as a way to settle down and relax. 

Finding Coping Strategies with Providence Treatment

All of these activities are things you can employ both at work and when you are home. Having a space to engage in some form of relaxation in between coming home and settling into the rest of your evening can help you release any work-related stress and leave it at the door.

Providence Treatment is one of the best drug rehab centers on the East Coast. We offer addiction treatment for executives and professionals and integrate coping skills development in our partial hospitalization program and intensive outpatient program. Flexible scheduling and programs that cater to executives, pilots, and medical professionals mean a chance to work with our team to find effective coping strategies that can be used in your professional setting within the demands of your job.

Contact Providence Treatment today to learn more about our unique programs for professionals. 

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