How and Why Stress Balls Work

The humble stress ball has been an office mainstay for years.  The people who own them swear by them.  Squeeze the little stress ball and your stress level drops, melting away as if by magic.

Actually, the mechanism behind their function is pretty simple.  There are two things at work here, with the first being simple distraction.

The act of clenching and unclenching your fist around the stress ball gives your mind something else to focus on for a few minutes; something other than whatever it is that’s been stressing you out.  Basically, it helps take your mind off of things for a few minutes.

Second, the act of squeezing flexes the muscles in your hand.  It’s not much, but you could consider it sort of low grade, low intensity cardio for your hand.  Doing that has the effect of slightly elevating your heart rate, which sends a bit more oxygen to your entire body.

Granted, it’s not much – it’s not exactly a Jane Fonda workout routine, but it’s just enough to make a notable difference in your metabolism, and that slight change is enough to clear your head and reenergize you, which in turn, helps to chase away the stress.

Although it may not appear so at first glance, the humble stress ball is actually (or can be) a potent weapon in the war against stress, and let’s face it, we live in stressful times.

We are, after all, still feeling the lingering effects of a global pandemic, and one of the side effects of that historic event was to completely redraw the map in terms of how the world works.

Who could have imagined five or six years ago that so many people would be working from home, and who would have guessed that companies would, by and large, embrace that change? 

Before the pandemic, many of the largest corporations were either openly hostile to the idea of allowing their employees to work from home, or they only did it very grudgingly.  These days, it’s hard to find a company that doesn’t have at least a portion of their workforce based out of their homes.

The point is, the world is in a state of flux, and there’s no way of telling how long that transition period is going to be.  The changes we’ve all lived through over the past couple of years have added even more stress to what was already a pretty stressful environment, so anything we can do to help reduce stress has to be counted as a win.

If you want to show your hardworking employees how much you appreciate them, what about sending everybody their own stress ball?  We have a number of fun designs, including, but not limited to:

  • Our clever “You Rock” design, which naturally is shaped like a rock and is sure to bring a smile anytime anyone sees it.

Our silly and delightful “Making a Difference” stress balls, with crazy hair and eyes, again, guaranteed to bring a smile, and who can stay stressed out when they’re smiling?

Or our brainy “Think Outside the Box” design, which is shaped like a brain and makes a perfect stress relief option for your more cerebral employees.

These, however, are just the tip of the proverbial iceberg.  We’ve got plenty of other designs.  So many, in fact, that you may be able to give a different one to every employee you have! 

If you’ve already got an employee recognition program up and running at your place of business, these designs, or any of the others we have, would make excellent, low priced gifts to show appreciation for your hard working staff.

Not only are they guaranteed conversation starters, they’ve got real, practical stress relief value, making them a solid win-win on the gift front.

If you don’t yet have an employee recognition program established, we highly recommend it!  Based on previous experience, we’d recommend structuring your new program such that it is largely employee driven.  You establish the metrics you wish to track, then have your employees form a committee and decide how best to pick employees that demonstrate excellence, and at what interval.

You will, of course, need to put some teeth into the program, which will mean giving it a budget, but we recommend leaving it to your employees to decide what specific gifts to hand out to show your appreciation, provided that they fall inside the guidelines you initially establish, of course.

Structuring the program in that way has a number of benefits to you, including but not limited to:

  • It takes the ongoing maintenance and management of the program off your plate
  • It creates more employee engagement and further empowers your employees.  They increasingly come to see that they have a stake in the future of the company, and that their efforts on your behalf are appreciated.
  • And it will both improve morale and decrease employee turnover rate, meaning you’re not having to constantly scramble to find new talent.

Best of all, if you do add stress relievers to your gift collection, you’ll be playing a small but important role in helping reduce the stress levels of your employees, which will further improve morale at your company.  It just doesn’t get much better than that!

We invite you and the members of your employee recognition program’s steering committee to take some time to browse through our complete selection of gift ideas.  You’ll find something there for every taste, preference and budget, so even if your employee recognition program is off to a humble beginning, you’ll find plenty of great gift ideas that work.

On top of that, almost every gift item we sell can be personalized and customized, often to include the recipient’s name and/or your company’s logo, enabling you to give something that’s truly heartfelt and is sure to be remembered for years to come.

Be sure to spend some time checking them out, and surveying the other appreciation gift possibilities.  You’ll be very glad you did.