Simple yet effective strategies to tackle stress
As a Chartered Accountant, you’ve undoubtedly felt the pressures that come with your role. Juggling responsibilities, meeting tight deadlines and dealing with high personal expectations can be overwhelming. We’re here to explore some simple yet effective strategies to help you tackle stress.
Monday 30 October to Friday 3 November 2023 marks International Stress Awareness Week.
The International Stress Management Association started the event in 2018, focusing on raising awareness of stress and its effects. The organisation has been raising awareness around the world for 25 years. In addition to raising awareness, they aim to improve the ways in which stress is managed both at work and at home.
According to Mind, ‘stress is how we react when we feel under pressure or threatened’.
But stress isn’t always a problem; in fact, sometimes it can improve our performance. It can become problematic if it continues for a prolonged period or intensifies.
Recognising what could push you beyond your limits is important. By being aware of your triggers, you can be better prepared to handle stress and prevent it from becoming overwhelming.
Common triggers are:
- Money and debt
- Deadlines or assessments
- Big life events like moving house
- Personal responsibilities like caring
Often, we have little control over the events that cause us to feel stressed, like deadlines or assessments. All we can do is manage what is in our control, like our actions.
Below are just a few of the things you can try to help manage stress:
- Talk to someone – support from trustworthy people can make managing stressful situations easier, whether that’s your team, friends and family or a mentor.
- Identifying stressful situations – knowing what causes you to feel stressed gives you the opportunity to try and prepare for these situations.
- Plan ahead – organising your time can help you to realise when you’re likely to become overwhelmed or help you to relieve some of the stress you’re feeling.
Resources and support ICAS members and students
We’ve gathered a list of resources available to you as a member or student to help you understand stress and manage stress effectively.
The CA Wellbeing section of our website provides members and students with information and support on a range of wellbeing-related topics, including stress. Some of the stress-related content includes:
- Gin Lalli, a qualified Solution Focused Psychotherapist, guides you on how you can empty your ‘stress bucket’.
- Alex Strang, Mental Fitness Coach, explains how you can use ‘moments’ to cope with stress.
- Sara Tate discusses how leaders can reshape businesses and teams with resilience at the heart.
- ICAS tutor Eleanor Poole shares hints, tips and practical suggestions to help students manage and overcome assessment stress.
Member and student wellbeing helplines
The confidential helplines are run by BACP-accredited counsellors who can offer emotional support or practical advice whenever you need it. There are also a variety of helpful resources, such as 4-week plans, webinars and podcasts, available to members and students on the wellbeing programmes’ websites.
- Members can access our Evolve member wellbeing helpline.
- Students can access our student wellbeing helpline.
Our Career Mentoring programme can play a vital role in a Chartered Accountant’s professional success.
By sharing guidance, experiences and offering valuable advice, mentors can help you to build resilience and gain a fresh perspective.
A mentoring relationship can also give you a safe space to talk openly and may be helpful when it comes to managing professional stress.
The Scottish Chartered Accountant’s Benevolent Association (SCABA) is a charity which supports CAs, their dependants and prospective CAs who find themselves in difficult circumstances.
Whether you’re facing ill-health, redundancy, debt, or other life-changing events, SCABA is dedicated to offering support during this time.
Useful links and external support
Information and advice: