Success is a product of maintaining consistency in performing at your peak. But stress in the moment may throw you off that path of consistency completely. How can you handle this stress before it stops you from succeeding?
1. Identify what your physiological signs of stress are so you can work to alleviate the tension
2. Counteract stressful situations by taking deep breaths
3. Find someone whose judgment you trust who can listen and provide counsel
1. Forget the reason you feel stressed in the first place — you are being asked to do something important and you want to succeed
2. Let the negative voice in your head spiral out of control — talk to yourself in a logical, gentle tone
3. Project your stress onto others — speak in a calm, controlled way and others will too.
Case study #1: Think positive thoughts;
Cha Cha Wang was seven months into her job as a business analyst at an online services company when her manager came to her one afternoon and asked for assistance. He needed her to turn around a comprehensive financial forecast for the company. And she had a week to finish it. “My heart started racing,” recalls Cha Cha. “Our company was newly public and I wanted to do as good a job as possible. I felt like I had two voices inside my head. One was saying: ‘That is impossible. There’s not enough time to do it,’ and the other was saying: ‘You have no choice; it has to get done.’” Cha Cha excused herself to the bathroom, looked in the mirror, and took a deep breath. She reflected on her days as an MBA student and her stint as a consultant. “In business school and in consulting, you’re inundated with a lot of different assignments and you have to juggle multiple deadlines,” she says. “I told myself: ‘I can do this. My personal life will go on hold for a week and I will not get much sleep, but it will get done.’” Having calmed her initial stress reaction, Cha Cha then focused on the “tactical execution” of the project. She made a detailed list of all the financial data she needed; she then scheduled meetings with colleagues who had that information. After each session, she incorporated new figures into her statistical models. She worked late every night that week, but she finished the financial forecast by the deadline. “When I was younger, I reacted more emotionally [to stress],” she says. “But now that I am a little more seasoned, and I’ve worked in several different jobs and tested my limits, I know what I can do.”
Case study #2: Vent to someone who will help you recover and move on
Pablo Esteves, the director of strategic partnerships for Emzingo — a company that runs leadership immersion programs for business schools — had been working on a proposal for a potential client for months. He had visited the prospective client on site and the two had gone back and forth over the proposal numerous times before he submitted it. Pablo expected to hear good news. But instead, he received an email from the school’s administrator that said: “We see the value in what you’re doing and we like what you’re doing, but it’s not for us.” Pablo immediately felt stressed out. His pulse started racing and he knew that he needed to talk to someone to calm down. “I knew exactly who I could vent to,” he says. Pablo, who is based in Madrid, sent an email to his colleague and friend, Daniel, who lives in Peru. He explained what had happened. Within an hour, the two men were on the phone. Daniel patiently listened to his problems, agreed with Pablo on certain points, and then offered his own perspective and advice. “He helped me understand why things maybe didn’t work out this time, but he also told me that we had other clients who were going to come through,” says Pablo. “He helped me regroup.” The pep talk helped. After the call Pablo felt less stressed about the rejection and energized about focusing on new projects.
READ FULL ARTICLE at:
How to Stop Worrying and Start Living (Paperback) Dale Carnegie.