You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘Emotions’ tag.

I sure get tied up in all these activities I’m engaged in. My to-do list is endless.

But it’s critical to spend some time reflecting on what’s going on. How am I doing – REALLY? Is the business healthy? How about my key relationships?

And when I’m surrounded by all this noise and distraction, it’s SO hard to do!

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I started my career as an engineer, in an engineering company. So the idea of displaying emotions in the workplace wasn’t exactly normal. We liked driving things by logic and analysis.

Photo by tengyart on unsplash

So I struggled as a new manager to work with people who thought about this differently. What I’ve learned is that we’re all three dimensional people, with our own lives and complexities.

Kids and animals get sick. Marriages are formed and fall apart. Loved ones die. Career prospects move forward or back.

These are all heavily emotional times, right?

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You’ve been working hard on this impending change. You worked out the kinks, and you figured out what order you need to talk to people. Managers first, then key employees, then key partners, then the broader population.

And you’ve been getting your mind around this for – what, three months now? Seems like it’s taken forever. But we’re almost ready to make the Big Announcement and move forward.

After screwing this up many times, I finally learned a lesson. And it’s very simple:

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This last year has worn us out. Sure, we can blame Zoom Fatigue – which is a real thing – but the honest truth is that we’ve an intense period of uncertainty, fear, instability, and even boredom.

But this is going to continue, and we wonder if we’ll ever experience “normal” as we had it a couple of years ago. I suspect not.

So how do we keep our energy up?

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You may not notice, but everything you do as a leader is affecting your people. If you’re having a lousy day, your folks pick that up and will reflect it by being brittle and tense.

Which then affects customers and everybody else.

But you also don’t want to live life behind a mask, right? Just put on the “inspiring, confident leader” face 24/7?

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SOME CONVERSATIONS are more confused than helpful. Nothing seems to be working. I don’t think I’m making progress.

I’m sure you go through times like this too.

My personal coping strategy is to step back, breathe, and try to see the bigger picture. That’s easier to say than to do, of course, but I try to give it a go.

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interview-1018333_960_720THIS LAST WEEK I had a chance to help out some high school kids in a very special way. Every semester for the last few years they’ve held “mock interviews” for some of the students, giving them a chance to find out what a job interview is really like.

Some of them are terrified.

But of course you’d expect that.  They’ve heard all the scare stories, a grade is on the line, and they’re putting themselves out into totally unfamiliar territory.

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WE JUST SURVIVED the most contentious election cycle in my lifetime.

There’s a lot of people who feel injured right now.  But our strength as a country is being able to pull together for the good of the nation after each election.

What we’re seeing is directly applicable to running a company.

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worryMANY YEARS AGO I started using the concept of “Just-In-Time Worrying.”  The basic idea is that there’s an appropriate time to worry about something, but often people make it into a protracted period of unfocused anxiety.

And, with perspective, you might even discover that something isn’t worth worrying about at all.

For me, it’s often a spiritual journey. Read the rest of this entry »

GarbageTHERE IS A SAYING in computer geekdom: “Garbage in, garbage out.”  Meaning that you can’t expect great results when you’re starting with junk.

The human mind works the same way.  And it explains how easy it is for people to get caught in cycles of despair and hopelessness.  If you don’t have hope coming into your life, it’s hard to imagine how you can have hope for a better future.

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