Your commute could be setting you up for a stressful day

A study from the University of Montreal has highlighted how stressful getting to work in the morning can be.

Annie Barreck, of the school of Industrial Relations at Montreal University, undertook the study which looked at the distance, time taken and the way of travelling to work and back on a daily basis and found that all three factors can influence the likelihood of burnout.

Working with different areas in Quebec, Barreck compared rural and urban areas and the types of transport, as well as the route. She found that there are many factors of a commute which affect burnout on three different axis: emotional burnout, professional efficacy, and cynicism.

The results of the study were mixed, largely due to the many factors that can affect an individual commute, but found that in the majority of cases the longer, more urban a commute is, the more stressful it is and the more likely the subject is to display symptoms of professional burnout.

Barreck explained: “A correlation exists between commuting stress factors and the likelihood of suffering from burnout. But their importance varies according to the individual, the conditions in which their trips take place, and the place where the individual works,”

It was found that those who commute into or across urban areas, unsurprisingly, were more likely to be stressed out, but, interestingly, passengers in cars were also more likely to be stressed than the people driving them, possibly due to a lack of a sense of control.

Of course, all this means that people are becoming stressed out before they even get to work, which itself is a very stressful place for many people.

In the ever stressful world that is today’s work place, we need to be able to take a step back and manage our stress in such a way that it doesn’t affect our lives. There are plenty of options such as mindfulness which have been found to really help with things like every day stress.

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