Re: IT Stress: Management, Empathy and the Kindness of Strangers
It seems this is a topic we just can't get away from. The linked article from the American Institute of Stress does a good job of explaining why - most people experience job stress daily, and it seems like the modern environment is more conducive to it. Times and conditions may change, but stress is the one constant... and in the age where we can address just about every other little inconvenience and roadblock in the workplace via technology (in fact, the always-on mentality is contributing to stress), it seems weird that the dangers of stress are often relegated to being the elephant in the room. Work-life balance is not a tickbox to be checked off on a list; work-life balance is your life. If your work-life balance is bad, your life is bad. Why do we allow people to live bad lives for the sake of their jobs, and more importantly, why do we seem to want to when we'd get their best work otherwise?
Maybe technology can be the answer as well as part of the problem. Drugs for everyone seems like a stretch to me (although no doubt they have their use and there are some who need them). It's interesting that the study notes they used a video game rather than a traditional (re: board/card/etc.) game. Do you have any idea why, Dave? The game was described as a cooperative music game - maybe it's this innately cooperative element that fast-paced interactive games allow that gives them an edge over other games or forms of interaction. Working together to accomplish a goal gives you immediate knowledge about someone, their tendencies, their attitude, and makes them seem friendly to you - in other words, you can't dodge it with questions about the weather. Maybe there's something useful to be gleaned from that in the role of other interactive and collaborative media in reducing stress.