5 Tactics to Help You Get Through Hard Days
Like most people, I occasionally struggle, and have bad days. For example: recently, an insurance agent told me that adding my 18-year-old daughter to our auto policy would cost an additional $8,000 annually. This was after I had explained that she will be in college 1,000 miles away – and without a vehicle. Or, I find myself overbooked or overscheduled, my team needs my input to move forward on a day when I have very limited time to give them, or a client comes to me with an issue requiring immediate attention.
When I get overwhelmed, I can catastrophize things, making them out, in the moment, to be worse than they really are.
To counteract this, I’ve developed a few tactics to put things back into perspective – all of them ideas I’ve either read or borrowed. When I coach entrepreneurial clients in the middle of a fire, I try to walk them through the 5 steps below, which have helped me on my hard days:
1. Stop, Breathe! – do not act on an immediate impulse – breathe, count to 10. Do this more than once, if necessary.
2. Isolate Yourself – get away from yourself and the problem for a few minutes. Leave it alone until you’ve calmed down.
3. Self-Talk – while isolated, ask yourself questions to distance yourself from the immediacy of your feelings about the issue facing you, such as:
a. How would a calm, well-balanced, rational, accomplished and successful entrepreneur address this situation? (Avoid using “I” in this question.)
b. If you saw yourself in a movie in your head, acting as you would like to in addressing this issue, what would that look like?
4. Write it Down – when you’ve settled down, write out a plan to deal with the issue calmly and rationally.
5. Focus on the Future – how will you feel about this issue two weeks down the road? In a month? In the next quarter? A year from now?
For me, it’s a question of perspective. What is a big deal in the course of a single day is a small blip in a week, 30 days, 60 days later, and often disappears from the radar altogether.
Take a moment to watch a sunset. Look at our ancient live oak trees – which have outlasted generations of human beings, and will outlast more. Take a walk, look at the sky. It’s a big world, with a long timeline.
Let us know how you deal with hard days by clicking here to respond directly to me. We would love to have your input.
Please feel free to share this email via the buttons below.
Until next Wednesday –