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Ten ways to make your life as a recruiter less stressful this year

Former recruiter Neil Shah, now director of the Stress Management Society, shares his top 10 tips to avoid burn-out

1) Avoid nicotine, alcohol, caffeine and refined sugar products.
They are all stimulants, so therefore they cannot calm you down. If you’re stressed, steer clear of them and keep yourself well-hydrated by drinking water instead. The quality of the water you drink can also have an impact on your wellbeing.

2) Work off stress with physical activity.
Have you been let down by a candidate who didn’t show up for the interview with your most important client?  Feel the blood boiling? Pressure or anger releases adrenaline in the body.  Exercise helps to reduce it and produces ‘good mood’ substances in the brain. So go for a brisk walk around the block when you feel tense, and try some regular exercise after work.

3) Relax with a stress reduction technique every day.

Try creative visualisations – it’s very easy and can even be done at your desk. Just slow your breathing and use all of your senses to remember your last holiday, hear it, see it, feel it, smell it and taste it.  Book yourself on a workshop or book in for a massage.

Or think up a self-affirming mantra to repeat to yourself (eg ‘I deserve calm in my life’, or ‘I have a choice in every situation’). Repeat it to yourself whenever you feel tense.

4) Get enough sleep.

Sleep is essential for the body to function properly. Sleeping pills are not necessary if you change your life-style. If you’ve habitually skimped on sleep, you probably won’t even remember how it feels to wake up fully rested. Give it a go for a week, and see if there’s a difference in how you perform during the day. If you are struggling try some sleep aids that will ensure a restful night’s sleep.

5) If you’re ill, rest.

Don’t just carry on regardless. Working will tire the body and prolong the illness. So recognise that you have limits and don’t carry on as if you were firing on all cylinders.

6) Agree with somebody, once in a while!

Life shouldn’t be a constant battleground. So even if you disagree with someone, avoid conflict by just agreeing or keeping quiet. After all, they have a right to their opinion, just as you do.

7) Learn to accept what you cannot change.

A well known prayer asks for the serenity “to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference”. This philosophy will help you avoid unhappiness, cynicism and bitterness. A perfect example of this would be the weather – no matter how much we complain it will not make the sun come out!


8) Listen to your body.

When you are tired, hungry or thirsty, do something about it. Also recognise stress and anger in your day and counter it immediately with a brisk walk, 10 minutes in deep relaxation or whatever works for you.

9) Learn how to say ‘no’.

Simple, but effective. Where a ‘no’ is the appropriate response, say it without guilt.

10) Manage your time.

Take one thing at a time. Don’t overdo things. Create time buffers to deal with unexpected emergencies. And, recognise that your day to day problems and responsibilities are the things that cause stress in your life. Tackle them with a system that works for you.

Stress often results from a general difficulty in coping with day-to-day problems and responsibilities. A useful strategy for dealing with a sense of being overwhelmed by all the things that need attention is prioritising and diarising:

Make a list of all the things that you need to do. List them in order of genuine importance, noting what you need to do personally and what can be delegated to others, and noting what needs to be done immediately, in the next week or next month etc.

What starts out as an overwhelming and unmanageable list which was the source of the stress and anxiety, is transformed into a more realistic and manageable set of tasks, spread out over a more achievable time frame, with some items removed from the list altogether, either through delegation or the realisation that they are, after all, unnecessary or unimportant.

Neil Shah is director of The Stress Management Society, an organisation dedicated to helping people tackle stress at work and at home.

Source : The Recruiter

Tributes for Marcia

One of the recruitment industry’s most inspirational figures, Marcia Roberts, has died following a long battle with illness.

Marcia was formerly the Recruitment and Employment Confederation’s CEO and was awarded the MBE in 2009 for her tireless championing of the industry.

A spokeswoman for the REC said she was an inspirational leader and added: “She will be sorely missed by all that worked with her.”

She added that Marcia was a strong advocate of the recruitment industry and its ability to positively change people’s lives.

Angela Masters, REC chairwoman said: “Marcia was a champion of our industry, a great leader and an inspiration to members and the staff at the REC. I enjoyed her company and came to consider her a good friend.”

Gary Irvine, former REC chair, added: “It was a pleasure to work closely with Marcia during my time as chair of the REC. As well as her drive and vision, she will also be remembered for her empathy and kindness.”

“Marcia was a pleasure to work with and for,” added Judith Armatage, the REC’s director of professional development, “She had a wonderful sense of humour that could inspire those she worked with. She became a friend as well as a colleague; she made a significant contribution to improving our industry.”