Best practices when it comes to dealing with stress and anxiety

Hi everyone,

Wanted to see if anyone in the community has any advice/experience when it comes to dealing with the anxiety and stress that comes with high-stress/pressure roles in finance. I usually tend to find myself stressing out about my responsibilities, and this is often amplified at 2am when I'm doing a task I've never done before!

Outside of therapy, anyone have any best practices? I've heard of journaling, breathing excercises, etc. helps but would love it if anyone has any specific resources they could point me towards to deal with this!

Thanks a lot!

Private Equity Interview Course

  • 2,447 questions - 203 PE funds. Crowdsourced from 750k+ members
  • 9 Detailed LBO Modeling Tests and 15+ hours of video solutions.
  • Trusted by over 1,000 aspiring private equity professionals just like you.

Comments (10)

Most Helpful
Nov 18, 2021 - 12:35pm

I use Ashwagandha. Not smoking, the pills. I was hesitant too cause it sounds like a drug, but it seriously only has benefits. It really helped me just be more energized, since I had better sleep, and it definitely calms you down. If not that, you can try to meditate, it surprisingly works. Just sit on your bed for 10 minutes and close your eyes and turn on some soft music or meditation instructions. one thing that helped me was deciding that I needed to pick something I loved doing that would help me relax. Basically, I would not give that thing up for any reason and made sure I did it every day. It's hard to do with a busy schedule, but you should be able to manage. For example, reading a book for 20 minutes, or for me it was just doing some sort of physical activity for 20/30 minutes a day. That way your brain is focused on something that you really enjoy and you'll feel better. 

Here is a link to the ashwagandha stuff. Again its not dangerous or anything like that. Basically is melatonin, zinc etc.

  • Associate 3 in IB-M&A
Nov 18, 2021 - 6:42pm

It sounds like you're just starting out in a new role. Give it your best shot, document what you tried, and then ask questions. People will really appreciate "Hey, I've tried X, Y, and Z approach. We're getting closer on X metric but Z metric still seems weird. I think it's because of W input. Can you see if anything looks off to you?" instead of just "Help me! I'm lost!"

It will absolutely get better in 3-6 months as you figure stuff out.

Nov 19, 2021 - 7:46am

Will agree with the couple people above - it's important to take a short break each day, try to find at least 20-30 minutes to do something non work related. Meditate, get out and go for a walk, just something where you can try to take your mind off work for a minute and refocus. Make it a priority to do something for yourself on the weekend - go to the gym, driving range, just something that you actually enjoy.

All work all the time is not healthy. We are all busy but if you don't take care of yourself then you won't be of use to anyone.

Nov 19, 2021 - 7:05pm

I strongly believe that a sound personal organizational method goes hand-in-hand with stress management. At this job, I've found that if I can have a consistent way to list out everything that I have going on across deals (and personal), it really helps get things out of my head, so I can prioritize what needs to be done now vs. what I can worry about later and take a break/end the night/enjoy the weekend/etc.. Probably stating the obvious, but a well-organized to-do list is also closely followed by a consistent methodology for email management and file management (how you organize folders, filing emails to keep inbox slim and less overwhelming, etc.). My 2c.

Learn More

300+ video lessons across 6 modeling courses taught by elite practitioners at the top investment banks and private equity funds -- Excel Modeling -- Financial Statement Modeling -- M&A Modeling -- LBO Modeling -- DCF and Valuation Modeling -- ALL INCLUDED + 2 Huge Bonuses.

Learn more
  • Investment Analyst in RE - Comm
Nov 19, 2021 - 7:50pm

any advice/resources for email/inbox mgmt and file mgmt?

Nov 19, 2021 - 8:05pm

Few random thoughts:

  • I'm an inbox 'zero' type, so I keep pretty detailed folder/sub-folder structures to get stuff out of my inbox and focus on what can be filed vs. revisited later --> I actually create sub-inbox folders for key things like "To Do," scheduling, waiting for review/feedback, stuff that associates under me are working on (by named individual, etc.); the rest gets filed into deal-related folders/sub-folders if no further action needed
  • Generally, I find SimplyFile a pretty useful plug-in for sorting email quickly
  • I also view my Outlook in the threaded messages format vs. scattered emails, so inbox management is less unwieldy
  • I'm a pretty religious believer in saving/having associates save attachments locally on our shared drives to get out of emails and make things easier to find
  • I generally structure my email folders and shared drive folders similarly, so it's easy to find files/emails (shared drive as source of truth; email as back-up)
Nov 21, 2021 - 7:14am

Sint aut aut at odio. Error ut rerum nihil ex dolor. Omnis deleniti placeat aut et autem aspernatur.

Repellat laudantium sequi magnam officia. Provident quasi quaerat rerum illo et ea quibusdam. Ducimus consequatur quia ducimus perspiciatis tempora et.

Start Discussion

Total Avg Compensation

November 2021 Private Equity

  • Principal (8) $676
  • Director/MD (18) $575
  • Vice President (70) $361
  • 3rd+ Year Associate (70) $270
  • 2nd Year Associate (143) $252
  • 1st Year Associate (292) $219
  • 3rd+ Year Analyst (26) $159
  • 2nd Year Analyst (63) $134
  • 1st Year Analyst (189) $118
  • Intern/Summer Associate (21) $67
  • Intern/Summer Analyst (224) $59