As a customer service rep, you’re exposed to a non-stop barrage of complaints, questions, and—at times—insults. You’re tasked with helping people who are already short on time and patience and it’s hard to deliver happiness to customers if you’re stressed out. Plus, stress can cause very real harm to your mind and body, so it’s important to find an outlet.
Here are a few ways to relieve the stress brought on in customer service, inspired by Parks & Recreation:
Pump Up the Jams
Music is a great stress reliever. Some teams prefer a Cyndi Lauper sing-a-long, while other teams prefer to groove to a little 90s R&B. You don’t necessarily have to put your music on a robot vacuum, but if your office allows for an impromptu dance party, there’s documented proof that dancing improves brain function.
Celebrate Your Wins
When the Chaps team at InsightSquared does an exceptional job, they celebrate by ringing a bell. These “chapswins” signify that someone has gone above and beyond to help a customer, or worked doggedly through a particularly complex issue to resolution. It’s important to take the time to recognize the work that reps put into cases. Why should salespeople be the only ones that get to have fun publicizing their wins? Public recognition is an excellent way to reinforce good behavior and make people feel valued.
Go On An Excursion
This can mean different things to different people. Maybe it means exploring nature, or going bowling, or just a long team lunch. Understandably, most people can’t take an impromptu drive to the Grand Canyon. Whatever you choose to do, it’s valuable to step away from the screens and phones for a while. Go outside of business hours—so you don’t hurt your first response time—and spend time with your teammates. A fresh perspective will give you more focus when you return to the queue.
Get a Hobby
Hobbies are a nice way to spend time without responsibility or schedule. They also have a variety of legitimate benefits, making you happier, healthier, and more productive. People with creative hobbies—like claymation—have been shown to be more helpful and collaborative in their job performance. Surely these are useful traits in customer service. The ability to spend a portion of your time doing something you love also helps to relax you and aids in psychological recovery after a stressful day of work.
This is another Chaps specialty. Once a week, our service team stops what they’re doing for a scheduled 10-minute meeting where they just lie down. It’s a subject of great fascination in the halls of InsightSquared, but it really works. Lying down helps your muscles and organs relax. It also normalizes your breathing and aids in digestion. If you can handle the funny looks you might get, lying down for a few minutes will give you the energy and focus you need to finish your day.
This works for some people. You spend all day helping other people, why not treat yourself to something special? Whether it’s clothes, fragrances, massages, mimosas, or fine leather goods, if it makes you happy, you deserve it. They say you can’t buy happiness, but you can definitely buy yourself a little smile every now and then to get through the week.
Ultimately, however you choose to relieve your stress is up to you. Just remember that you deserve time to unwind and it will actually help you be better at your job in the long run.