There is a great article in Forbes by Travis Bradberry on how successful people stay calm. Bradberry is co-author of the book Emotional Intelligence 2.0, which I have found very useful in working with leaders to develop their emotional intelligence competencies in order to become more effective leaders.
Research shows that 90% of top performers are skilled in managing their emotions during stressful times. They rely on their Emotional Intelligence skills – which tend to separate great leaders from merely good leaders. Bradberry’s article details 10 tips that successful leaders use when facing stress. I particularly like five of them – all practical and under our own control:
1) They Disconnect – they unplug from work to re-energize.
2) The Limit Their Caffeine Intake – stress stimulates adrenaline. Caffeine also stimulates adrenaline and too much adrenaline makes one “amped-up” and less likely to remain calm.
3) They Sleep – we learned this from our mothers. Get our rest.
4) The Squash Negative Self-Talk – this kind of thinking can really drag one down.
5) They Re-frame Their Perspective – put things in context. Often we find that what we’re worrying about is not as big a deal as we initially thought – it’s likely not the end of the world. Don’t dwell only on the worst case scenario without also considering the best case and remember that reality is likely somewhere in-between.
What do these five have in common? Seems to me they focus on taking action to maintain good physical and mental health. Disconnecting, limiting caffeine and getting enough sleep will all affect one’s health. The last two deal with the mental paths we choose to take. If you follow these steps, you are in better shape to deal with stress successfully. Read the entire article to learn more about these tips and the other 5 that Bradberry identifies.
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