If you have been in the workplace for a number of years, then you probably understand the pressure that comes with it. The tight deadlines, office politics, your prospects as a person and expectations from your boss, the list can go on and on. This form of pressure is what at times causes anxiety, and that it has potential to affect your career and your life as an individual. Natasha Niyigena, a finance consultant, says feeling anxious at work can come in many forms. For her case, she says her bout of anxiety tends to come with trouble with concentration, which in turn affects her productivity. She adds that when feeling anxious, she also gets irritated easily and can barely perform her duties as required. Author Dennis Relojo-Howell notes that if you feel unhappy at work, feel a sense of dread when you wake up each workday morning, you get butterflies and feel panicky walking into the office each day, then you could be suffering from workplace anxiety. Research indicates that a significant number of people are suffering from workplace stress. This isn’t good for employees or business. It’s detrimental to productivity, work quality, work and personal relationships, well-being and ultimately business success. Employers should be doing more to tackle this issue and support employees, he adds. There are lots of factors involved in anxiety and the exact causes can be difficult to unpick. Anxiety can build slowly and manifest long after the real cause. Childhood experiences, your current situation (including a build-up of stress at work), mental health problems and medication can all have an impact on anxiety levels. Niyigena highlights that even though experiencing work anxiety is not a rare occurrence, if your job is a constant source of pressure, there is need to look deeper at what might be the reason behind. “Extreme anxiety can indicate an underlying issue with your work. Reflect on how things are at work; what could be making you unhappy and how are you planning to deal with it? Depending on what you discover, decide to switch roles or departments if that’s possible for you. If nothing changes, you can even choose to switch careers or jobs altogether,” she notes. Career coaches point out scenarios such as giving presentations, meetings, office parties, managing relationships at work, among others as those that have potential to cause or escalate anxiety at work. Edouard Migambi a content creator, also says that when it comes to anxiety in the workplace, the situation differs according to an individual. For some people, it could be the fear of underperforming, pressure to impress their bosses, while others, it can be the extra-long work hours. He therefore notes that the best way to deal with anxiety is for the employees to find support from their managers. “Support from managers or fellow employees can be very helpful in such scenarios. Also, it is important for such an employee going through this to take some time off and reset their mind.” Migambi is also of the view that practicing self-awareness is critical at this point. For one to be able to overcome this condition, they need to first understand the root cause of it, he says. “Understand what exactly is causing your feelings of anxiety. Being aware of the cause is what matters when addressing this. If its fatigue, you can decide to take some time off. Find time for yourself and refresh,” he adds. Howell points out that there are also steps you can take to reduce job stress and look after yourself, such as taking regular breaks, eating healthily and getting enough rest. The more you can do to support good health, the easier you will find it to deal with stressful situations at work. Ultimately, if you are working in a toxic work environment, or have a narcissistic or bullying boss, it could be time you found a new job in a business that values its employees.