7 Effective Ways to Lighten Stress and Enhance the Mental Health of Leaders

In an increasingly stressful workplace, mental health is a huge challenge for leaders. There is a need to find a way to reduce stress and enhance mental health in the workplace. Here, we will explore various ways leaders can encourage mental health at the workplace through distressing and fostering their mental health.

Encouraging breaks

Our culture needs to stop glorifying being busy which often leads to burnout. Being busy does not necessarily mean one is being productive. Leaders should normalize taking breaks and not beat themselves up for taking some time off and focusing on their wellbeing. When leaders set this example within the workplace, others are likely to follow suit.

Build a support system

Often, leaders are stressed due to the loneliness that comes with their position and nature of work. By building a support system, leaders learn to share, talk to each other and support each other while going through tough times. As a leader, it is important to surround yourself with people who help you stay grounded and that have a calm presence.

Step away from the situation

There are situations that you need to step away from once you realize they’re bringing you stress. It’s important to understand stress triggers when they are about to happen. Once you feel that you are getting overwhelmed, you can step away from the situation for a while, clear your head and approach the situation afresh.

Seek the peace of mind from within through meditation and mindfulness

Through meditation, mindful breathing, and mindful seeing, leaders can seek peace from within such that they become calm enough to deal with the hectic world surrounding them. Here are some of the mindfulness techniques they can use to find peace from within.


Focusing on breathing and stillness helps feel a sense of calm, peace, and balance. This technique has a positive impact on emotional wellness and overall health. Meditation is a healthy practice to pursue and help handle the stresses that come with work. Research shows that the top 3 reasons why people meditate are; to reduce stress and anxiety (84%), to improve concentration and memory (53%), and to improve performance (52%) (Mellowed, 2020).

Mindful breathing

Mindful breathing helps reduce stress response and anxiety as well as helps improve emotional regulation and social anxiety disorder Hoge, et al (2013). While seated in a calm position, deep inhalation and exhalation relaxes the mind, calm the muscles, and bring peace to a person.

Mindful seeing

This helps look at things and take in the colors, patterns, and textures. Mindfulseeing helps you become aware of your surroundings and become more present. This can help in emotional regulation. By focusing on items, we become less overwhelmed by what is around us and gain a sense of calmness. This is borrowed from Fleming and Kocovski’s treatment plan and helps handle anxiety (Fleming & Kocovski, 2007).


As stressful as the workplace gets, leaders, can find a way to reduce stress, manage anxiety and maintain their mental health. A lot of leaders are incorporating meditation into their daily routine and realizing massive benefits from it. Among other ways to deal with stress, mindfulness helps regulate emotions, improve productivity and creativity, and brings overall calmness in a highly distracted world.

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Fleming, J. A., & Kocovski, N. (2007). Mindfulness and acceptance-based group therapy fr social anxiety disorder. Cognitive and Behavioral Practice, 279-289.

Mellowed. (2020, January 2). Meditation statistics: How& why people meditate in 2020Mellowed.

Hoge, E. A., Bui, E., Marques, L., Metcalf, C. A., Morris, L. K., Robinaugh, D. J., Worthington, J. J., Pollack, M. H., &Simon, N. M. (2013). Randomized controlled trial of mindfulness meditation for generalized anxiety disorder. The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry74(08),786-792. https://doi.org/10.4088/jcp.12m08083