As temperatures heat up in the summer, so too can your emotions. Summertime was once a quieter period at work, yet for some, that has changed. Many executive coaching clients I work with are heading into budget time, have deadlines on key projects and/or are making the last push to hit their targets for 2013. Deadlines do not change, yet you may have more people out of the office for vacations. Emotions can run high during this stressful period. Here are three tips to remaining cool in these hot times:
1. Walk Away – If someone approaches you about a subject that triggers anger or frustration in you, it may be best to walk away. Not rudely, but professionally. I have a client that uses this tool. You simply say to the person, “let me think about that and I’ll get back to you.” This way, you aren’t responding right during the height of your emotional response. Use this as a stall tactic to then craft your response after you calm down.
2. What Are You Really Trying to Accomplish? When we get emotionally “hot” we tend to fight for our viewpoint – to fight this specific battle. Yet it’s the war you want to win. Ask yourself, “What am I really trying to accomplish?” This exercise helps you evaluate whether this particular subject is something worth fighting for. Perhaps you will find it’s not something worth getting upset over.
3. Ask More Questions – Often, when a co-worker or boss suggests something that goes directly against what we think, we immediately start to defend our viewpoint. If you can, instead, ask more questions to fully understand their position. This accomplishes four things: 1) it enables you to better grasp their thought process, 2) it shows respect, 3) you may find either something you agree with, or something that leads back to your viewpoint as the correct way, and 4) the person may come to realize that his or her idea isn’t the best after answering your questions. Encouraging dialog often leads to better understanding by all and a better overall outcome. This may be more difficult to employ when emotionally “hot”, yet can be quite effective if you are able to use it.
For more information, visit our website at www.makinglifecount.com or contact Joni Lindquist at 913-345-1881 or firstname.lastname@example.org.