Posts Tagged ‘dealing with stressful situations’

How to Deal with “One of Those Days”

Have you ever had ‘one of those days?’ You know, the ones where the day starts out not on a good note and goes downhill from there?  It seems that no matter how positive and calm you remain, nothing seems to work to feel better? And the more you try to overcome, the more irritated you become – the boss or a coworker irritates you; you can’t seem to focus to get your work done; or you just want to start the day over.

I have to admit that today is one of those days for me. I somehow overlooked the fact that my alarm clock was still set to weekend time, so I woke up later than I anticipated, not getting some tasks done before I went into my office. Then, I had a plumbing problem, so I left the floor wet, to later feel very irritated that I rushed only to have a scheduled client having to reschedule. My computer is running slower than I’d like, only adding to my frustrations; I just feel really edgy, which is not a good feeling when more clients are ahead and I need to be open to them.

If you’ve had one of those days, and not sure how to resolve or feel better, here are some tips I use that may help you as well – the more you use them, the better you will feel:

  • Breathe – this is one of the fastest ways that helps me feel calmer immediately as it allows oxygen to get into your system and helps the stress chemical Cortisol to move throughout the body and do the job it’s meant to do, which is to relax
  • Visualization – while I’m breathing, I allow my visual field to ‘see’ happy pictures, which may be colors or my dog, or even a beach scene; sometimes I use the visuals to create the calming scene I envision. This may or may not work for everyone at first but with practice can
  • Write – this really helps to release any negative feelings and see things from a different perspective. Getting any negative or racing thoughts out will not allow them to stay in the head, which is a great way to let things go as well as both challenging thoughts and coming up with strategies/solutions to those bad situations that led me to feel poorly (note to self: make sure to check the clock on Sunday night)
  • Go Outside – I find this also to be an immediate relaxer, particularly standing in fresh air and in sunlight. We take in both the rays from the sun, which helps with Vitamin D levels and taking in oxygen, both which are natural calmers
  • Gratitude – taking the focus off of negative situations and placing them on to positive thoughts and perhaps lessons learned from the negatives, helps to see that I do have a good life in spite of setbacks. It makes me realize that I’ve been through adversity before and not only survived, but thrived, and will today. I always feel positive after this practice, which has now become a daily habit for me

If you’d like help to increase your workplace performance and job satisfaction, while decreasing your stress level, contact us today for your Complementary Discovery Session:

Dealing with Holiday Stress in the Workplace

Today is the last ‘normal Friday of the year; with Thanksgiving week beginning, this is the time when our focus tends to go to holiday preparation and less on job tasks. Most people are taking off to see family for Thanksgiving so who picks up the work from them? Next Friday – Black Friday – kicks off the Christmas season, creating more stress.

While organizations are winding down their end-of-the year fiscal operations, there is a push to ensure the books look good. This can lead to stress for employees who are tasked to achieve organizational goals that will lead to a successful year-end. But there is another stress that the holidays bring within the organization which involves workers; this can include:

  • stress to get holiday preparations going, which can include: decorating the house, buying presents, baking holiday goods, going to parties, attending their children’s school functions, planning visits to families who may live out-of-town, or dealing with having family come to visit
  • worrying about taking time off for these preparations, either by realizing you don’t have enough time or working over-time to get the hours (and the money)
  • feeling pulled between work and home obligations and being in overwhelm and guilt at trying to please two masters
  • feeling lonely or sad as this time of year is when family comes together so many employees are far away from theirs, or are distanced, or are dealing with poor relationships or missing loved ones who are no longer here
  • worry about dealing with the hustle and bustle – and poor behaviors- the holidays can bring: rude or demanding customers, heavy traffic, unwillingness to be courteous or to help out when needed

I see this as a two-fold problem, which is that of the individual worker as well as the organizations. There are solutions that each can take to help sail through this holiday season more smoothly, recognizing that how each individual handles stress is an impacting force. Here are some tips to help the holidays be less-stressful:

  • For workers, making goals and lists will help to see what is in your schedule over these next weeks; I recommend taking a piece of paper for each task you believe you have to get accomplished, which can include: decorating, paying bills (you still have your daily life to consider), buying presents, sending Christmas cards, baking, parties or other functions to attend, travel plans, personal time (you do need to add yourself into the mix). Once you list them all, go back and number them in order of importance, which is how you can start ticking them off and feel more relaxed. For your work tasks, do the same – this way, you will know how to plan your days more productively. Be sure to have good tools in your ‘toolbox’ to help when you feel overly stressed or emotional; this can include: journaling, coloring, deep breathing, s0me form of exercise, asking for help, getting sleep, or a host of other good techniques to relieve the stress
  • For employers, they can recognize that this time of year is a time of high-stress; some interventions they can do include: paying attention to employees who may seem more irritable or other behavior changes that could indicate they are feeling stressed; having open dialogues with employees so they feel recognized; recognizing their work by allowing them some extra time off, perhaps 30 minute lee-way in the morning, at lunch or at the end of the day to attend to their to-do list; having a luncheon or bringing in snacks, or decorating the office. Any of these can make worker feels appreciated and recognized, which can get the work done while leaving workers more satisfied at the end of the day.

Stress will occur during this time but it doesn’t have to be impactful or debilitating. Being prepared and planned will help you merrily get through the holidays stress-free. If you’d like help getting through the holidays stress-free, contact us at

Political Skills as a Deterrent for Stress

Do you ever wonder why there are some employees or managers who deal with  a high level of daily stress do not burn out? Some researchers have shown that one’s political skills help them deal with stressful situations.  Here are some skills that are most useful:

1. Using practical intelligence as opposed to analytical or creative intelligence

2. Being calculated and shrewd about social connections

3. Inspiring trust and confidence

4. Ability to deal with individuals who have a wide variety of backgrounds, styles, and personalities

To summarize, these skills can be learned but need focus and attention in order to adopt these behaviors.  When you understand that these skills help you not to react to adverse situations in the workplace, you will be less frustrated or stressed and will feel more positive.  This can equate to increased job satisfaction and involvement in your work.  Do you possess these skills? Which do you use?

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