Ways to Restore Equilibrium When Work is a B****h

Someone asks you how work is going. You roll your eyes, make a farm animal-like sound, and feel yourself gearing up for a diatribe.

Even if you love your job, there will be rough times. Times when the thought of going into work brings dread. Long hours, working weekends, and doing tasks that don’t play to your strengths.

In other blogs, I’ve talked about how to change your thinking so you’re getting the results you want at work no matter the circumstances. Today, let’s talk about how to get back to normal when things at work aren’t, so you aren’t damaging your evenings and weekends (and alienating friends and family).

For the purposes of this article, I’m focusing on what you can do outside of work, rather than changing what is happening at work.

Make physical activity a priority

For some reason, when we’re overworked one of the first things we take off our “to-do” list is exercise.

If you have to let some things go in your personal life during a stressful time at work, there are two things you MUST keep as priorities, and one of them is physical activity.

What can you do that you a) enjoy, and b) will give you the biggest bang in the shortest amount of time?

Get sufficient sleep

This is the other priority you MUST keep, no matter what is happening at work.

You KNOW you can’t possibly give your best effort at work if you are sleep-deprived. Further, your family and friends aren’t going to want to hang around you if you’re only half-awake.

Set a personal goal

Having a goal that has nothing to do with work can be a powerful motivator to make the best use of your non-work hours.

Do you want to train for a half-marathon, learn a foreign language, or hone your painting skills?

Identify something you’re passionate about and give it a regular slot in your schedule.

Cultivate your relationships

When you’re in a stressful period at work, it can be easy to forego plans with friends and family. It can also be difficult to initiate such plans if you’re afraid you’ll have to bail at the 11th hour.

The key here is to go for quality over quantity. You might not be able to set three or four social engagements during a stressful week at work, but can you schedule one? Or do you have a friend or loved one who is game for a last-minute activity when you find yourself with an unexpected open block of time?

Let go of the unimportant

When your personal time is limited, this presents a great opportunity to eliminate the unnecessary and inconsequential from your life.

What can you stop doing? What can you hire someone else to do, such as cleaning or yard work? Are there relationships in your life that no longer serve you? Can you create personal time by having groceries delivered or purchasing pre-made meals? Could you turn off the t.v. in favor of a workout or visiting with a friend?

Look at your daily and weekly activities with a critical eye, and eliminate or minimize those that aren’t enjoyable for you.

Ask for help

Let those closest to you know what’s going on at work, how long you expect it to continue, and ask for their help. Parents, a spouse or significant other, and your closest friends might be able to pitch in with such things as shopping, childcare, and simple errands.

Don’t suffer in silence! “No one can fill those of our needs that we don’t let show,” says the classic song “Lean on Me.” So true.

 

Interested in a deep dive with me? Register for my next webinar. In addition to great content, you’ll have the opportunity to ask me questions and even get coached by me live! Here’s the link to find out about this month’s topic, date, and time: click here

To listen to this week’s podcast, “Work/Life Blend (Balance is a Myth)” click here:

050: Work/Life Blend (Balance is a Myth)

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005: Think Yourself Motivated

No matter the circumstance of your job, you CAN keep yourself motivated.

What are some of those circumstances?

-Not having a supportive manager

-Co-workers who aren’t supportive…or who may be trying to sabotage you

-Not being recognized, or compensated, in alignment with your contributions to the organization

-The company as a whole does not have a clear direction…the focus is constantly shifting

-No opportunity for upward advancement

-You have responsibility, but you don’t have authority commensurate with that responsibility

-Expectations that don’t allow for much life outside of work

 

You can think negative thoughts about these circumstances, but that is completely optional.

What are some of the thoughts you might be having about the circumstances I’ve mentioned?

“My boss doesn’t care about me.”

“I hate the people I work with, and they hate me.”

“Nobody cares how much I contribute to this company.”

“How can I possibly be successful in this company, when no one is steering the ship?”

“How can I be effective in this role when I can’t make the changes I need to make?”

“All I do is work.”

 

All of these thoughts are optional.

What results might you get with those thoughts?

-Underwhelming performance evaluations

-Termination

-Reduced chances for promotion

-Less-than-stellar performance evaluations

-A lack of satisfaction in a job well done

 

To change these results, change the thoughts you are thinking.

Because your thoughts generate your feelings.

Your feelings generate your actions.

Your actions generate your results.

 

Here’s the thing about your thoughts:

-They are optional.

-You probably aren’t even aware of them.

-It takes practice to change your thoughts.

-The first step to changing a thought is to recognize the thought you’re currently having.

-The second step is to decide whether or not that thought is serving you.

-You’re not allowed to beat yourself up for your thoughts.

-You don’t want to try to make a 180-degree change in the thoughts you’re having, because you won’t believe that new thought.

 

Make small shifts in your thoughts toward a thought that serves you better.

Going from “my boss hates me” to “I have a boss.”

That’s nice and neutral, isn’t it?

Does it serve you better to think “I have a boss” than “my boss hates me?” Absolutely.

Eventually you’ll be able to start practicing an even more positive thought.

Take baby steps.

You’ll get there.

 

Here are some final thoughts about your thoughts.

-No one can make you feel happy…successful…fulfilled…but you.

Your boss can’t make you happy. Your co-workers can’t make you feel successful.

Only you can do that. And you do that with your thoughts.

-Be aware of your thoughts, but don’t beat yourself up for the thoughts you’re having. Just pay attention.

I write my thoughts down every morning: good, bad, neutral. I dump them out on the paper to see what’s going on up there.

-Make incremental changes in your thoughts that move you in the right direction.

-Don’t abdicate your happiness…success…sense of fulfillment…to anyone but yourself. That’s your power, and you don’t want to give it away.

Interested in a deep dive with me? Register for my next webinar. In addition to great content, you’ll have the opportunity to ask me questions and even get coached by me live! Here’s the link to find out about this month’s topic, date, and time: click here

 

 

 

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003: Job Search Strategies

We’re wrapping up the second-biggest hiring push of the year: after Labor Day through mid-November.

Let’s talk about active vs. passive job search strategies.

If you are in no hurry to leave your current employer, then a passive job search may be appropriate for you.

For those of you who are unemployed or see the handwriting on the wall, an active job search puts you in the driver’s seat.

I want you to choose four-five job search strategies, and I want the majority of your strategies to be active.

Active Strategies

-Face-to-face networking – events, one-to-one conversations

-In-person career fairs – companies, industries, alumni associations from your university, Department of Labor

-LinkedIn networking – connecting with people and starting conversations

-Professional association networking events – going to the weekly/monthly meetings held by the professional associations you belong to

-Other ideas?

Passive Strategies

-Professional association job postings

-Target employer websites

-General job boards

-Industry job boards

-Online classified ads

-LinkedIn job postings

-Personal website

-Web portfolio

-Facebook job search

-Other ideas?

For each of the strategies you choose, come up with two to three specific action steps you will take to achieve that strategy.

The next step after coming up with your action steps is to calendar those steps (DON’T create a to-do list). 

Interested in a deep dive with me? Register for my next webinar. In addition to great content, you’ll have the opportunity to ask me questions and even get coached by me live! Here’s the link to find out about this month’s topic, date, and time: click here

 

 

 

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