Survey respondents were asked how they would advise others to deal with stress. Their answers fell into two broad categories: on-the-job and off-the-job strategies.
|On-the-job||Be good to clients||Focus on the best thing for the client and keep learning|
|Delegate||Outsource those items which are easily outsourced|
|Task/time management||Compartmentalize the issues. Deal with one then move on to the next.|
|Mindset||Worry about the things you can control and not those you can't.|
|Off-the-job||Prayer/meditation||Meditation works for me|
|Exercise/health||I try to get to the gym as much as possible.|
|Family/friends||Be a fully engaged parent/grandparent|
|Leisure||Have free time|
Of these strategies, the most popular were exercise (26%), enjoying leisure time (20%), positive mindset (17%) and time management (13%). These strategies were consistent across age, gender and other demographic characteristics.
We added questions around vacation time to this year’s survey. The median vacation time reported was up to three weeks. Not surprisingly, more vacation time was associated with greater satisfaction, work-life balance and lower stress levels. This was true across age, gender, and years of experience.
On-the- job methods were generally more successful at reducing stress than off-the-job methods. In fact, the data showed that the level of perceived stress was 19% higher for advisors using off-the-job methods. Perceived stress was lower among advisors that adjusted their mindset or were good to clients. Those who used delegation and time with family/friends to cope experienced the highest stress levels. The strategies offering the lowest perceived stress were focused on dealing with issues directly rather than putting them off. It could also be that the advisors using these strategies initially had lower levels of stress.