The survey – conducted with nearly 2,500 of Profmed’s professional membership base – showed that the stress is attributed to work-related factors. More than 50% of young professionals said they were more stressed in 2018 than the previous year. The CEO of Profmed, Graham Anderson, explains:
“The rise in financial stress is not surprising, considering the economic conditions which continue to take their toll on every sector of South African society.”
A cause of concern is the increase in the number of professionals who said they experienced higher levels of stress-induced anxiety and depression, with approximately 40% of young professionals claiming to feel detached and wanted to be left alone. This was linked to the higher demands from their careers, which included working overtime.
Image supplied: Profmed
Other factors include having less time to spend with family or friends, as well as the increase in workload. Despite that, at least three quarters of those interviewed believed they are able to handle stress well. Compared to the data collected during 2017, less than 10% took leave due to stress-related illness.
On the plus side, young professionals are learning to manage the effects of work-related stress and are actively doing something about it. Most rely on exercise to see them through the dark times. Anderson added:
“Exercise improves not only your physical wellbeing but also your mental health. Studies have shown that exercise releases endorphins, which increases levels of focus and improves your sleep, all of which gives you a greater sense of control over your life.”
Most young professionals put up with the stress to cash out a large paycheck at the end of the month. A study conducted by recruitment firm Michael Page earlier this year collected data from more than 100 000 candidates which covered more than 1,500 professional jobs.
A BI analyst, for example, earned between R600 000 and R800 000 annually, while a network architect could bank on R700 000 to R1.m per year.
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