Gender Differences of Stress in the Workplace
Results from a recent Work and Well-Being Survey showed that more than one third of American office workers reported experiencing chronic stress at their jobs. Women in particular report feeling worse than men.
37% of women said they feel stressed at work, versus 33% of men. Roughly half (48%) of women feel like the office is a level playing field for men and women, while 54% of men do.
In addition, 35% of women feel that they have opportunities to advance where they are working, versus 43% of men.
The survey shows that stress is a strong factor for many with women feeling pressures more acutely, only 34% of women and 38% of men say that they have resources to manage their stress. In contrast, approximately 36% of employers provided stress management resources for their employees.
“Chronic stress reduces all of the things that help productivity — mental clarity, short-term memory, decision-making and moods,” explained physician David Posen in the Wall Street Journal coverage of the survey.
While the APA noted that it is imperative for employers and organizations to understand and promote employee well-being, it is my belief that it is also crucial that individuals be aware and find ways to manage stress to improve overall quality of life.
For instance, job stress can be better managed by taking steps to improve physical and emotional well-being, identifying automatic habits and negative thinking that may contribute to work stress, and improving relationships both professionally and personally with increased communication which may, amongst other things, allow for better possibilities for conflict resolution.
Surveys such as this provides us all a chance to relate to the experience of others, and to also be aware of our own needs for self-care and work-life balance. For more on stress: see my previous post, Stress: Understanding & Managing.