Archive for the ‘Managing Stress’ Category

Keep your goals visible

Thursday, November 17th, 2016

You made a New Year’s resolution to set goals, and you’re doing it. Bravo! But are you doing it as effectively as possible?

Goals are only effective if you act on them, and you can’t act on them if you can’t see them. Too many people create a list of personal or professional goals, then sock it away in a drawer somewhere. Those goals are as good as dead. They will never happen.

Instead of filing them away, create a very visible place for those goals.

I have a friend who made her list of goals the screensaver on her computer. She sees them a hundred times a day, which means there’s a good chance she’ll achieve them. Laminate them and put them up in the shower. Stick them to your steering wheel. Whatever it takes to keep them front and center.

Organize your goals into separate lists according to timescale—goals for the week, for the month, and for life.

Don’t include everything. Life offers thousands of opportunities, but maybe ten of those will take you where you want to go. Don’t let those crucial ten get lost in a list a mile long. Focus on the ones that count, then post them where you’ll see them every single day.

Share Your Limits

Monday, October 10th, 2016

There’s always more work to be done….am I right? But one of the most productive things anyone can do is set definite limits on the work you bring home. Sometimes it’s unavoidable, and that’s fine. But when it becomes a norm to work through the evening, you are sapping your energy and reducing your productivity. And nobody wins that game.

Want some help keeping those limits in place? Share them with those around you.

If you’ve decided not to work after 7 pm, tell your wife or husband and the kids. They’ll hold you to it, believe me! And both your work life AND your home life, will be better for it.

Overwhelm

Friday, September 23rd, 2016

A Princeton study shows that work is more overwhelming than ever—or at least that’s our perception. Three-quarters of the workers in the study said work is more stressful than it was a generation ago.

That’s certainly true in some ways. But overwhelm often has just as much to do with a conversation going in your head as in the real world. When you tell yourself, “I don’t even know where to start,” a feeling of helplessness sets in. Every task seems to be shouting your name.

STOP. There are priorities here. Take a deep breath and figure out what has to happen first, what can wait until later, and what doesn’t have to be happening at all.

Suddenly the priorities are standing in line, waiting patiently for their turn.

Finally, stop telling others how overwhelmed you are. That adds to everyone’s feeling of overwhelm, and it gives the tasks in your head permission to jump out of line again. They are not in charge—you are!

Once you step off the treadmill of overwhelm, you’ll NEVER go back.

Build customer loyalty when things go wrong

Sunday, March 1st, 2015

Customer loyalty is the golden goose of any business. Yet too many think that loyalty begins and ends with great products and services. You’ve got to look beyond the product to your reputation in the community.

And that has everything to do with how you treat the customer – especially when things go wrong.

It’s easy to handle customers with simple questions or needs. Do it well, do it with a smile—but know that that moment isn’t where your reputation is made. It’s in the thornier, more emotional moments, the times you are solving sticky problems for the customer, that your reputation in the community is made or lost.

When a customer comes to you with a problem, DROP EVERYTHING. Nothing matters more in that moment. Own the problem immediately, empathize with their frustration, and make it clear that you will not stop until it’s resolved to their full satisfaction.

There is no better feeling as a customer than knowing your frustration is coming to an end.

A perfect product or service is good. But solve a problem quickly and well, and customer loyalty is yours to keep.

Get the chip off your shoulder

Sunday, July 20th, 2014

I’m willing to bet that everyone reading this has known someone with a massive chip on their shoulder. Maybe you’ve even been that person, who knows?

Well, you probably do—and those around you definitely do.

Have you ever noticed that people who walk around with a chip on their shoulder don’t seem all that eager to knock that chip off? They nurture it like a beloved child. As long as the chip is there, they can say “Woe is me” and embrace the victim role because someone has hurt them.

People can’t make you feel bad. You do that to yourself by interpreting their intent and keeping that chip where it is. We all do it—but it isn’t good for anyone.

Instead, change your interpretation of that remark or action that hurt you. There’s a good chance you can see it in a different light, one that helps you climb up out of that hole.

Better yet, talk directly to the person, even if it’s the CEO of the company. More often than not, you’ll find that the intention was not what you thought. Clear, honest, authentic communication benefits everyone.