How to Best Deal with Pressure at Work

September 10, 2018

3 tactics for dealing with pressure at work.

When do you feel the most pressure at work?

Generally, you feel the most pressure when you are working on a project that’s either highly visible or highly important. And those are projects you want to get right – after all, they are either highly visible or highly important (or both). 

That means ultimately, to be a true rockstar at your job, you need to be able to handle pressure well. And leadership guru and LinkedIn Learning Instructor Todd Dewett, in his course Management Tips, gave three suggestions for doing exactly that.

Quick caveat – pressure at work should be temporary. If you are feeling pressure all the time at work, we recommend reading this article

LinkedIn Learning Instructor Todd Dewett explains how to deal with pressure at work in this video from his course, Management Tips.

3 Tips for Dealing With Pressure at Work

According to Dewett, three things you can do to relieve pressure at work are:

    1. Go to the source of pressure.

Don't suffer in silence. When you are feeling pressure, go to its source and let them know you are feeling the heat.

That could mean talking to a boss that made a large – or perhaps even unrealistic – ask from you. Or a cross-functional partner. Or, even a client.

Often, they’ll give you some help or leeway to complete the ask – perhaps more resources, an extended deadline or a narrowing of the scope. 

“Be respectful, but investigate a little to be sure you understand the pressure you're feeling,” Dewett said. "You might find out that there is a little more wiggle room than you think."

    2. Assess your workload.

If there is a big project you need to get done ASAP, do your best to delegate, automate or outsource your other work that isn’t related to it.

In other words, look for help. If someone else can take on your other duties for a short time, you’ll be able to focus solely on hitting your deadline – and likely do a better job.

FYI, if a team member helps you in a time of need, be sure to help them when they need it. Or, help them before you need help, and this will be a much easier ask. 

    3. When pressure at work spikes, pay special attention to your wellness.

Most of us do the exact opposite when pressure spikes at work. Many times, we eat worse, drink more and forgo sleep and exercise.

That’s only going to make the pressure more acute. In these times, more than any other, be particularly mindful of what you eat and try to still get regular rest and exercise.

“It's a simple fact,” Dewett said. “The more you treat your body correctly, the more your body will help your brain function effectively under pressure.”

These tips won't eliminate the pressure completely. But they will put you in a better situation to succeed, so you excel completing that highly important or highly visible work.

Want more helpful tips like this? Watch Todd Dewett’s LinkedIn Learning course, Management Tips.

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