Special Series – How to Negotiate Tough Times: Part Three – Dealing with the Current Crisis and You

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With the current economic volatility, the market changes, and the current reports of the COVID-19, the uncertainty feels like the aftermath of Sept. 11. Like then, most of us felt out of control with so many bad things seem to be happening all at once. This e-Tip reveals how to deal positively with a leader you can control – YOU.

How to Deal with Yourself in Tough Times

You’ve heard the advice. In times of change and uncertainty, a leader needs to remain calm and rational. Leaders should watch for unnecessary stress in their people, provide help where needed, and encourage others to have hope. However, rarely are leaders given any practical strategies to achieve this peaceful, inspiring demeanor. Try these suggestions.

Monitor your daily dose of doom and gloom. 

In my broadcast journalism days, there was a phrase used each night. The producers used it to select which story would “lead” or run first on the news. “If it bleeds it leads.” To grab a potential viewer’s attention, the stories which covered a scary event or tragedy aired first. Remember, much of what you hear is sensationalism. 

Use reputable news sources to stay informed and Make Decisions.  

The World Health Organization can give you the updates, advice, answer FAQ’s,  and address those myths. WorldoMeter shows a count of those currently infected, fatalities, those who recover. Crisis communication expert Lorri Allen tells us to go to mainstream media which does investigative stories when seeking the truth.

Recharge your batteries and refocus. 

Take care of yourself. Staying healthy is more than washing your hands with soap and water. Remember to exercise, eat well, get sleep, take breaks, see friends, participate in activities you enjoy, and seek downtime away from the stress. Here’s my past article on How to Get More Done Without Burning Out.

If you’ve been in one of my sessions, you may have experienced the 60-Second Cool Down. It’s a short breathing activity to gain control of yourself before having conversations with those who are draining your energy. Now more than ever, staying cool, calm, and collected is crucial.

Author of Momentum Mindset: 52 Tips to Master Your Disasters, Overcome Adversity and Boost Resilience, Kim Becking says, “Challenges, unexpected changes and uncertainty are guarantees in life. In a recent blog, she offers six  concrete ways to be more mindful and present. 

Remember you’ve survived bad times and unexpected events in the past. 

Remind yourself of those times you successfully dealt with disruption in your personal or professional life. You’ve addressed bad situations that you didn’t create and couldn’t prevent. Here is a recent article I wrote on Dealing with the Unpleasant and Unexpected.

Hidden Strengths or Talents

Perhaps you will discover hidden strengths or talents. Usually in times of unanticipated change, options and opportunities appear that you wouldn’t have explored otherwise. This may be the time to activate the coaching and mentoring program you’ve considered. Many coaches work virtually. 

Look for the Gifts.
Often crisis situations force you to be more resourceful and creative. You may have an increased awareness and appreciation of others or experience an increased gratitude. 
Remember in all this stress your health and mental well-being is just as important as your clients, those you lead, your family, and your friends. Think of all you do for everyone else and take time for yourself. YOU ARE WORTH IT! Journey On!