Nobody ever said being an adjuster is easy. (If they did, they might need their head examined.) Almost every adjuster I know has suffered at some point from limited sleep, crazy schedules, and claims that just keep coming in, with seemingly impossible deadlines to close them all. It can feel like you're facing a Category 5 hurricane, but these recommendations can help you keep your head above water.
Don't let claims adjusting get the best of you. Image credit: Guy Lombardo
If you're going to have the physical and mental stamina to deal with workplace stressors, a healthy and balanced lifestyle is a must. Starting the workday tired, uncomfortable and emotionally out of sorts makes it even tougher to cope with work-related stress.
- Get plenty of sleep and maintain a consistent sleep-wake schedule, even on weekends. I know. We all have those days we stay up late or sleep in, especially on the weekends, but we aren’t doing ourselves any favors. Maintaining a consistent sleep-wake cycle keeps your biological coping systems healthy and active. Here are the health benefits of sleeping and how far they reach.
- Eat a well-balanced diet. I've been known to succumb to a breakfast of Mountain Dew and peanut butter cups now and again. So bad! Your diet can have a profound effect on your mood and sense of well-being. Studies have linked eating a typical Western diet filled with processed meats, packaged meals, takeout food and sugary snacks with higher rates of depression, stress, bipolar disorder and anxiety.
Breakfast of champions. (OK, maybe not so much. It was a moment of weakness.)
- Don’t resort to alcohol as a stress reliever. Yes, a glass of wine or two can relieve stress in the short term. Over time, though, drinking too much can increase anxiety, depression and stress.
- Exercise regularly. Exercise has some direct stress-busting benefits, such as producing endorphins, your brain's feel-good neurotransmitters; improving your mood; improving your sleep; and releasing tension.
- Try relaxation techniques, such as yoga or meditation. I can see certain people I know thinking, “Me, try yoga? Yeah, right!” Have an open mind and don't knock it until you try it. It does work!
- Turn off all those phone notifications! They are so distracting. Stick to checking your email at certain times of the day. If the email is really that important, the sender will give you a call. Same thing goes for all your social accounts.
- Stop trying to multitask. In the past, being able to multitask was considered an accomplishment, but that's changed. Current studies show that our brains weren’t built to multitask, and we are actually hurting our brains when we do it, possibly even permanently. Because we are constantly shifting gears, multitasking pumps up stress hormones like cortisol and eventually tires us out, leaving us feeling mentally exhausted.
- Don’t be afraid to try services designed to help adjusters. They can save you from becoming entirely overwhelmed. Check out Part 4 of our series for some time-saving tools.
Don't miss Part 6 of How Stressful Is It Being an Insurance Claims Adjuster, where we'll go into more detail on Maintaining a Sense of Humor. Couldn't we all use a laugh?