How to keep your stress levels low while working finance jobs

Working careers in finance can offer high salaries – but with them come high stress levels. A number of recent studies have investigated the high stress levels attached to different careers. In fact, more than 80 percent of all Americans currently feel stressed out by their jobs, up by roughly 10 percent when compared with figures from 2012, according to a study conducted by Harris Interactive and cited by Forbes.

For those working finance jobs, those percentages may even increase. For example, CNN Money notes that purchasing agents – professionals who help clients to negotiate deals on products and services bought and sold – experience extremely high levels of stress. More than 94 percent of purchasing agents feel their job is stressful, according to the news source. 

"Goods may arrive late, or someone finds them at a better price or there's a problem with quality," Harry Hough, a former purchasing agent for a Fortune 500 company, explained to CNN Money. "Buyers get criticized from all sides. They have to have thick skin."

Luckily, there's a number of ways that individuals working finance careers like purchasing or accounting jobs can lower their stress levels. Here are a few tips that can help you to keep your calm – even when your job is sending high levels of stress your way. 

Plan your day, hour-by-hour
Many workers find themselves struggling to finish their tasks on a day-by-day basis – and they work long, extended hours to compensate for that fact. Plan out your day on an hour-by-hour basis before you get to the office each morning. You may find that your assignments are managed much easier if you institute self-imposed time limits on each task. 

Don't be afraid to socialize after work
Any job can be made easier by strong communication skills, and by the help of a collaborative team of coworkers. Yet many workers find themselves so focused on their tasks that they never truly get to know their coworkers on a personal level. Don't be hesitant to meet with them outside the office for dinner or a drink. You may find that you get along with some of your fellow employees extremely well – they may help you to do your work in a more efficient matter.

Break your bad habits
We all have bad habits that add stress to our workday. Some of us show up to work late and work furiously to catch up, some of us keep extremely messy work areas that hinder focus, and some of us are unable to focus on one task at a given time. Whatever your bad habit, you should focus on taking strides to break it. You may find your days much more comfortable once you do!

Watch your personal health – eat well and exercise regularly
A lot of your projects at work likely stress you out – but a few steps taken outside the workplace can help you to center yourself. Regular exercise is one of the best tools we have to help us fight against stress, so don't be afraid to use your lunch break to go for a run. And always ensure you're eating healthy – junk food can contribute to your stress struggles as much as your job itself. 

Make use of your days off
Most of all, it's important to know that you can't be working 24 hours every day. Leave your laptop at the office when you leave for the weekend. If you never take time to relax and relieve stress, you'll never be working to the best of your abilities. The first way to battle stress at work is to make sure you have time when you're not working – and ensuring that you always use that time to relax.