Monday, April 27, 2015

Under and Over It

"I'm so over this...."

How many times have you heard that phrase? How many times have you said it? It's one of those phrases that has made it's way into our common language; yet, I'm not sure that we're actually conveying anything meaningful.

Now before you all get worked up hear me out. I'm not suggesting that we don't get frustrated, or stressed, or worn out from all the excuses around us. I believe we're actually wasting our energy by dwelling too much on those problems.

Small Steps
One of the strategies I use to deal with overwhelming pressure, or stress, or negative self-talk is to simply allow it to overwhelm me. Yes, I give in. I let it roar through my mind and body. It hasn't killed me yet, and once I allow those emotions to flow I find clarity on the other side.

...and then I take a small step to get back on track.

Feelings of frustration and anxiety in our work are often the result of a perceived loss of control. Problems have come up, we are trying to understand them, but they are still unresolved. I don't know about you, but I like to be in control of the work...I don't like the problems controlling me! I take small action steps to take control back.

Go Big
Once I regain my footing I shift into "go mode." For me, that means thinking bigger than the problem. It's not enough to solve a's an opportunity to re-engineer the source of the problem to create something much better than if the problem simply went away. I push myself to think bigger than I did when those emotions washed over me.

Let's face it, no one ever changed the direction of their organization by feeling satisfied solving minor process problems. Our opportunity as leaders is to push past the problem...and past our own comfort zones to create something special. Problem solving is great for today...but leaders have to balance today and tomorrow simultaneously.

"If you're only solving today's problems, you won't be one of the leaders tomorrow."

How About You
Are you over it? What does that mean to you? More importantly, what will your team see you do as a result? Get yourself out from under the flood of excuses. Take both big and small steps and show your team how amazing your organization can be. It is entirely up to you.

I'd love to hear from you.

No Excuses.

1 comment:

  1. I really loved this post. I know I need to get better at recognizing the cycle of how I starting feeling like I'm "over it". When I see it coming - I too have found an amazing way to step away from the issue(s). I step back in a big way. Working virtually - I can go into the yard and work in the garden for ten minutes. Or I make a quick healthy snack, or draw something with my daughter, I do something start to finish without anyone else's input, comments, suggestions or feedback. It's amazing how completing a small project gave give you back much needed perspective and open your mind back up to your creative and best open self. When I am in the office, I find that stepping back for me involves writing someone a "thank you" email - whether it's the IS guy who helped me last week or a teammate who really went above and beyond. Talk about a great way to rescue your mental health! Thank someone and I assure you it puts things in perspective quickly, puts you in a better mood, and by giving back - you're going to be much better at tackling that pesky issue. Thanks for posting this. By sharing what works for you, I've been able to articulate what works for me. Hopefully this might help someone else who feels backed into a corner when the "Stuff" gets to be too much!