Improve your relationship with STRESS! | 6 ways to cope better!
Chronic stress creeps into our lives slowly, and we are seemingly unaware we’re operating in a stressed “survival mode”. My biggest wake up call EVER was when I fell asleep at the wheel and drove my minivan off the highway with my small children in the back, strapped into their car seats. “Drove” is an understatement, we flew off the highway, becoming airborne, landed hard, crashed through a massive fence and then many trees. I totaled the car.
I was a working mom with young kids and decide to take them on a work trip with me. I thought it would be fun. I was in control and capable of managing it all. In retrospect, I was running on empty long before the work trip, it was just the enough to put me over
the edge. Funny thing is, I thought I was fine and coping well. Was I ever in denial!
What I didn’t realize at the time were the effects of chronic stress on our bodies and mind. Cortisol floods our brains when we are in a chronic stress state and the impacts range from forgetfulness, to increased emotional responses, to brain cells aging prematurely, increased production of free radicals, to out right killing brain cells and these are just the highlights.
Of course, we can’t live without stress, but we can certainly become more aware of our stress and its impacts. Awareness helps us implement coping mechanisms, before we get into serious trouble.(Like I did)
Here are 6 tips to help you have a better relationship with stress.
The ultimate goal is your health.
Healthy mind. Healthy body. Healthy attitude.
(BTW we walked away from that accident with only a couple of scratches, but my life was forever altered.)
Feeling STUCK? | 5 ways to fire up your motivation
One of the greatest challenges for me during this past year has been motivating myself.
Obviously, the pandemic, living the same day over and over again and Zoom fatigue are all real but I am pretty sure this isn’t the only reason I am lacking motivation. As the pandemic gets under control, I urn to be out and about again and wonder, will I have more motivation? If so, why? This got me thinking perhaps I could look at this as an opportunity to reflect. What was my motivation pre covid, why and what would I like it to be going forward? Am I pursuing activities and accomplishments in the hopes of an external reward, or do I find the endeavour itself very rewarding?
As you know, many of us have been hard wired to seek external validation, from being told we are good kids, to getting good grades, winning awards, placing in sporting events, and we get accolades for these comparative accomplishments. I am not suggesting these are not valid achievements or worthy goals however it’s my experience that we fuse validation and motivation to the extent that external validation becomes inextricably linked to our motivation. Sometimes (lots of the time) this misleads us, it pulls us in directions we should not be going. It is also a bottomless pit, an insatiable beast! We can’t get enough and often we don’t believe the validating comments anyway, it is a vicious circle …we need more, and more. Are we pursuing endeavors for accolades? Do they align with our own values and our purpose? Do we want to jump out of bed and get to these things because we are excited? If not check out my tips below.
Here are 5 tips to help you identify this:
We must start somewhere. Like everything there is a first step. Start there, start small and build on your plan. Science has our back on this as well. Research shows when we shift our mindset from external motivators (extrinsic) to internal motivators (intrinsic), we’re far more likely to achieve our goals and research also suggests we might be healthier and happier for it.
Working with a coach is a great way to identify your purpose and values, supporting you to make the best decisions for you and build up your engine of intrinsic motivation!
Trust Issues, they are everywhere! 5 ways to build trust in your workplace today!
Personally, and professionally, we talk about trust A LOT. We learn at an exceedingly early age, trustworthiness is everything. “Your word is your bond”. If I were to ask you a time when you were caught in a lie, I bet you can recall it perfectly. What you did, what you said you did, to who and with whom, the whole deal. You likely remember how you felt as well. The shame and remorse possibly the disappointment, in yourself. It is a big deal, a non-negotiable and it is all around us, why do we have such an issue with it?
We have heard the saying “trust takes years to build, seconds to break and forever to rebuild”. I am not sure I agree with this. Trust does not take years to build, we generally trust people and we trust them immediately. If you say you are pilot and can fly this plane, I am going to go with that. We do not ask the Doctor for her resume. We count on servers to clean their hands and not recycle our food. Do you check your receipt every time you buy something? Nope, for the most part we blindly trust much of the world around us, particularly when it comes to strangers. When we are at work however things can get messy. All of sudden we are nervous that perhaps those we work with don’t have our best interests at heart. Maybe there is side talk and the belief that our trust, though easily passed out to the barista this morning, is much harder to give to the person in HR.
Why is this? Well, we know the barista does not have a hidden agenda, she is just doing her job and she does not really know us anyway. Those we work with know us, they see our strengths and our weaknesses, they may have an agenda, but most importantly we have an agenda. We are making assumptions and withholding in some cases. We do not want to look incompetent, and we can be quick to judge when others do. We build up walls to protect ourselves for what may be a toxic work environment and we form alliances with only a few of our coworkers. We have doubts about our boss’s competency and we feel threated some how, some way many times a day. Does this sound familiar? Well, if not YIPEE for you, you are in a great headspace and workplace. If it does sound familiar, please read on.
Five Tips to build trust in your workplace.
“We don’t build trust when we offer help, we build trust when we ask for it.” Simon Senik
We benefit from admitting we don’t’ know it all and we can’t do it all. We need each other to accomplish our work we are not a one-person organization! How would you feel if your co-worker asked you to support her initiative to create an amazing work culture? We want to share our ideas and we naturally want to hear those of our colleagues. Blindly trusting all those we meet and those we work with may be a bit naïve, but I prefer this to the assumption that everyone is out to get me. I certainly get far more work done and have access to many great ideas, when I trust those around me and make it known, loud and clear, I don’t have all the answers and I need help!