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Stress is Made Worse by Low Energy and Not Enough Money

Performance Living 101, the precursor to living a balanced and healthy performance lifestyle, says… you don’t want to be distracted and held back by hidden challenges created by your own lifestyle. In a Performance Lifestyle, we master the lifestyle mindset and skill set to achieve our real goals in life and business… it’s about waking up to be successful every day so pay, for instance, is ultimately not an issue.

According to Susan Adams some 83% of American workers say they feel stressed out by their jobs, up from 73% a year ago, according to a new study by Harris Interactive for Everest College. The No. 1 reason workers feel stressed, according to the survey: low pay. This is the third year of the survey and the third year that less- than-adequate paychecks were the top stressor for workers. The study was conducted by phone among 1,000 adults between Feb. 21 and March 3.

While pay was the biggest source of stress last year, the percentage of workers who pegged it at No. 1 rose this year, from 11% to 14%. This year unreasonable workload also ranked as a top stressor, with 14% saying they had too much to do, up from 9% last year. Annoying coworkers and commuting tied for the next-most-stressful parts of the job, at 11%. The next-worst stressor was working in a job that was not the person’s chosen career (8%), poor work-life balance (7%), lack of opportunity for advancement (6%) and fear of being fired (4%).

“More companies are hiring, but workers are still weary and stressed out from years of a troubled economy that has brought about longer hours, layoffs and budget cuts,” said John Swartz, regional director of career services at Everest College, in a statement. Though the unemployment rate has ticked down to 7.6% from 8.2% a year ago, the picture for people who might want to look for a new job hasn’t improved. As of January 2013, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were three unemployed people for each job opening, roughly the same number as a year ago.

The survey tracked responses by women versus men and found some interesting results, given the recent debate about the wage gap between men and women sparked by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg’s bestselling book, Lean In. In this year’s survey, 18% of women said that low pay was the most stressful aspect of their job, while only 10% of men said pay was to blame. Likewise, more women than men pegged low pay as the biggest stressor, but the numbers were lower for both groups last year: 14% for women and only 8% for men. This year men said the biggest stressor was unreasonable workloads (14%), followed by annoying coworkers (12%).

The study also looked at what stressed workers of different education levels. For those with a high school diploma or less, low pay ranked as the top stressor (18%), followed by annoying coworkers (14%). College grads ranked unreasonable workload as the No. 1 stressor (17%), followed by their commute (12%).

Predictably, people with different income levels found different aspects of their job stressful. For those earning less than $35,000, 26% said that their top stressor was low pay, followed by 11% who said they were most stressed because their job was not in their chosen field and 10% who said there was no chance to move up in their careers. Among the highest earners, with a household income of $100,000 a year, 16% said an unreasonable workload was their biggest problem. An equal percentage said their commute stressed them out the most.

The survey did uncover some happy workers, like the 18% of workers making $100,000 or more who said nothing at work stresses them. But that number is down from last year when 37% of that group said they were stress-free. Among lower-wage workers this year, only 9% said they felt stress-free on the job.



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