7 tips for turbulent times: managing under pressure
You and I live in turbulent times. Webster’s New World Dictionary defines turbulence as commotion, violent agitation, irregular motion, wild disorder. These words accurately sum up our world in 2008. For many of us, every day we feel the earth shift under our feet. Where is the stability, security and peace that we yearn for? It doesn’t exist in the way we think it should. It just doesn’t. And it may never exist that way again. What does this mean? It means that we have to look elsewhere for what we desperately want and say we need. As an executive, you must “get by” for your own good and that of your organization. You are a leader. What you think, what you feel and what you do affects everyone around you.
You can allow yourself to be sucked into the turbulent waters without a survival plan, or you can integrate the following seven tips into your life NOW: ` Find your center to ground yourself. One of the scariest periods I experienced in my working life was when my organization was at great risk of losing a significant percentage of its government funding. In truth, I shuddered in my shoes. The stakes were high, and my staff looked to me for the security I couldn’t give them. The situation seemed bleak. The only thing that got me through that year was complete confidence in my ability to cope. No matter what has come my way for thirty years, I have relied on my self-knowledge of my steadfastness, my belief in a Higher Power, and my commitment to weather the storm of the day.
I have learned to flow more with the turbulence, finally understanding that strong resistance only aggravates the situation for myself and others in my charge. I urge you to identify your rock and then hold on to it regardless of global, national or local circumstances. Take measurements based on that rock. Avoid being pulled in a hundred different directions. Listen to your inner voice; quiets the mind. Stay the course. Your company’s mission statement and strategic plan are the direction. Remind yourself daily of your organization’s purpose, its primary reason for existence. Frequent rewriting of missions and plans is rarely a good thing. As fast as the world changes, you may be able to redo these documents several times a year. That doesn’t make sense for a number of practical and philosophical reasons. What does make sense is to be clear about the priorities of the company and to classify the goals and objectives when necessary. You may not be able to accomplish the fifty things originally described. Maybe meeting half of them is your reality right now. Knowing which half can mean the difference between stunning success and devastating loss.
Trust your instincts. Everyone is intuitive. Yes all. Those who seem to be more intuitive than others simply tune in more often and more deeply. You have to practice using your intuition, and eventually you will come to trust it. You will not make decisions without consulting him. believe me; It is true. Instincts are visceral, not intellectual. To make wise decisions, you need to consult both your mind and your guts. Something may seem right in your head but not in your stomach. Pay attention to what you feel there. Go with it. Ninety percent of the time or more you will be on target. There are times when, although you follow the course, you know that you need to modify the strategies to complete a certain objective. Your instincts tell you events or circumstances demand it. Not making these necessary changes in the way you accomplish something can bring great losses to your business. Loss of profits, loss of employee morale, loss of reputation… Always check and weigh the external factors, and be guided by them as you go through your course.
Keep employees focused. Turbulence, particularly continuous turbulence, upsets most people and throws them off balance. Perhaps the best way to help employees swim in the rapids is to make it clear to them what is truly important during the chaos. People may not be sure of much, but, if they are sure of the company’s priorities, they can stay focused and focused. Turbulent times actually provide an opportunity for staff to engage in great teamwork. During that terrible year of uncertain funding in my own organization, I made it a point to discuss priorities during every team meeting, as well as in individual staff meetings. As a result, I found that my staff dealt with their anxiety more productively. Having a clear path to follow, they felt more secure. When they felt more secure, the quality of their work improved. People tend to not get it right for long periods of time out of fear that they have no constructive outlet.
Manage your fear. The best way to control your fear is to seek support from other people, spiritual resources, physical exercise, and spiritual practices. Pretending that you are not afraid or hiding your fear inside yourself generates physical and/or emotional illnesses. You really have to deal with it, or it will eat you alive. Also, if you become a half person, you may not be able to lead your team effectively. A diminished, weakened, compromised individual exacerbates the fear that already dominates the environment. You need to harness whatever strength you have and then develop it. develop it. Make it grow. Talk to people you trust. Hire a trainer. Take long walks. To meditate. Read motivational literature. Expect worship services. Pray. Take up a new hobby that requires concentration. Whatever you do, avoid wallowing in fear. Know that the destructive mind chatter that you allow to run free robs you of the energy and creativity that you should possess in packages under the circumstances.
Recognize that every situation changes over time. While many of us don’t want life to change, it’s a good thing that it does. Even bad things change. Nothing stays the same. Sometimes the changes are dramatic; sometimes they are minor changes. Regardless of the magnitude of the change, different dynamics are set in motion. A new Vice President joins the executive team… a key employee dies unexpectedly… our Board fails to reach the consensus everyone hoped for… the company’s budget is severely cut… the US economy is collapses… Each of these situations alters the way business is conducted in your store. Any of these can happen overnight. When they happen, we have three basic options: act constructively, act destructively, or go numb and freeze. What are you doing? What has been YOUR story? Do you need to choose a healthier way to cope with change and lead others through the change they fear? Open yourself to the possibilities. Though frightening, turbulent times often show us opportunities we never dreamed of before. We are more creative and vibrant during chaos than during stability. Turbulence gets our brain juices going, allowing us to generate new ideas and examine the same old story from a very different angle. In that sense, turbulent times are certainly a gift.
A gift we may shy away from, but a true gift nonetheless. Consider this: If we human beings lived inside the blissful bubble of security indefinitely, we’d have no reason to explore our glorious potential. We are not meant to stagnate. We are here to be stretched and, yes, occasionally pushed out of our comfort zones. It is in turbulent times that we discover exactly who we are and how much we are capable of. Turbulent times force us to be higher in the game called life. Are you more paralyzed with fear or excited by possibility? What is the real YOU? And what message are YOU sending to YOUR team?