If you have ever been in a prison, you know that the environment can make you feel tense, unsafe, and insecure. These feelings are usually something that a person does not have to go through on a regular basis. However, if you are a correctional officer, this is your normal state of being. Having to endure these feelings constantly can take a toll on one’s mental health and it’s important to know how to manage this work-related stress.
How to Manage Stress
At the end of the day, your health comes first before any job or anything else. If you are finding yourself having a hard time managing your stress, here’s some helpful tips on how to manage your stress.
1. Eliminate Unnecessary Stress
If possible, you should be avoiding stressful people or situations at work. If the person or situation is not something you need to be a part of, then it’s okay to say no and walk away.
2. Accept the Things You Cannot Change
How others think, feel, behave, and act is out of your control. When you learn to accept that, only then can you focus on changing your own reactions and responses to certain people and situations. You are in charge of how you think, feel, and react and you are your most important tool in finding peace.
3. Make Sure you Find Time to Relax and Unwind
Finding time to relax after work is important for anyone, but it’s especially important when you are in a highly stressful career. Spending time with your loved ones can release endorphins and allow you to untense from the stress of work. It’s important to not constantly isolate yourself when you are feeling down.
4. Practice a Healthy Lifestyle
Your mental health is only as good as your physical health. You can better your physical, and in turn your mental health, by exercising regularly, eating healthy, avoiding alcohol and drugs, and getting enough sleep. When you feel good about yourself, your self-confidence and self-esteem increases which can help reduce your stress.
If you’re a CO and interested in joining a community of your peers that want to work on managing stress, please DM or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) me today so I can share information with you about a stress management course I'm currently creating exclusively for COs.