A recent study has revealed that older workers are less likely
to experience work-related stress because they are, well, older,
wiser, and their kids have flown from the nest.
"Many older workers are empty-nesters," said researcher Gwenith
Fisher, an organizational psychologist at the University of
Michigan's Institute for Social Research (ISR). "They don't have
the same work-personal conflicts that younger and middle-aged
workers deal with, juggling responsibilities to children along with
their jobs and their personal needs."
The study, presented in San Francisco at an annual meeting of
the Gerontological Society of America, has wide implications since
by 2010 middle-aged and older workers are expected to outnumber
their younger colleagues, say the study scientists.
Fisher, Quinnipiac University researcher Carrie Bulger and their
colleagues surveyed more than 1,500 people between the ages of 53
and 85 who worked at least 20 hours a week. The surveys included
questions to get at the prevalence of various job stressors and how
those stressors relate to a worker's life satisfaction and physical
"In general, older workers did not report high levels of
work-related stressors," Fisher said.
About 50 percent of the entire survey group agreed or strongly
agreed they have competing demands being made on them at work.
Participants who reported low levels of stress were also more
satisfied with their lives and in better physical health than the
highly stressed. Fisher recommends some basic guidelines for
fending off work-related stress. Sleep tops the list.
"In the short-term, you may be able to cut corners but in the
long-term, cutting back on sleep may compromise your immune system
and you'll be more likely to get sick," Fisher said.
Regular physical activity can go a long way toward helping your
body handle the physiological effects of stress, while boosting
your overall energy and mental well-being. At work and home, Fisher
recommends active time management, such as to-do lists. And
establishing a clear boundary between work and home-life can be
(Agencies via Xinhua November 20, 2007)