What you see on shows like Hell’s Kitchen is not a myth. Kitchens can truly be hellish places to be and feel more like an emergency room than a dining establishment. You have people running left and right with hot plates, pots and pans, managers complaining about things not coming fast enough and, if you happen to be the chef, your whole career and destiny of the business is on the line. This is one of the reasons why a lot of kitchen staff end up quitting or leave the business entirely.
However, there are ways that you can manage stress if you want to increase your longevity in this field and keep your sanity intact. Here are a few of them.
Rearrange Your Break Schedule
First of all, you have to make sure that you use your breaks wisely and see if you could rearrange them if possible. Speak with your boss to see if you could get them at a time that works for you.
Restaurants have downtimes, and management is more likely to acquiesce if you want to take your breaks during these periods. They don’t always have to be at the same time either, just as long as they are within a reasonable time limit.
Also, ask if you could add some time to your breaks, or make them all the same length instead of having longer lunch breaks and short breaks at the beginning and end of your shift.
Use Your Breaks Wisely
Next, you want to make sure that you use this time wisely. If it’s lunchtime, make sure that you prepare your food before you leave so you don’t waste time on preparation. We would also suggest that you segment break times. Part of your time should be to have a complete break.
If you’re not into meditation, you should look into it now. It is very popular with kitchen staff, and just 5 minutes of meditation during breaks could completely change your day and help you recharge your batteries.
We also suggest that you take most of your break times to do something you genuinely love. If you like gambling, for instance, nothing is stopping you from hopping on your favorite online casino to unwind. If you’re looking for a great option, you can click here. Reminding yourself of the things you love in life will allow you to disconnect and forget some of the issues in the kitchen. You’ll come back refreshed and ready to face the gauntlet.
Take Care of Yourself
Stress is a natural part of working in a kitchen, but how you react to it will depend on what you do outside of work. If you pile bad sleeping and nutrition habits on top of it, you are more likely to crack. So, make sure that you get plenty of sleep. Be careful with after-work drinks as they will affect your sleep and overall tolerance to stress.
Make sure that you watch what you eat as well. Be careful with anything containing high levels of refined sugars as they will wreak havoc on your mood. Make sure that you have a diet full of good carbs and protein. Also know that coffee can be a great pick-me-up, but it can add to stress if you overuse it, so tread lightly.
These are a few simple things that any kitchen employee can do to keep stress under control. We would also suggest that you look at your environment and see if you’ll be able to sustain it for the next few months or years.