Stress has a direct impact on the corporate culture, on the leader’s leadership style, performance, and health.
People express stress differently: some people get angry, some get exhausted and withdrawn, and others go into fight or flight mode.
11 Best Strategies For Leaders To Fight Workplace Stress
There are several ways to remain calm under pressure, manage your stress and use it to your advantage.
#1. Be more self-aware & develop your emotional discipline
It becomes critical to always take a step back from a situation, seek deeper insights in your thoughts and behaviors to identify stress triggers, weigh out the outcomes of the situation. How important is this situation for you?
Being a great leader depends on how well they know themselves. Leaders must make sure that they are self-aware, clearly communicate their goals and expectations, reach their goals, set high standards, expect quality work and meet deadlines, demonstrate that all their team members matter, show gratitude, don’t settle and spend time with their team.
Needless to say, a little introspection is required from time to time.
Wondering how do you become the best version of yourself?
Sometimes, we end up in or go after leadership positions but don’t understand why or how we got there.
It is always important to assess our goals, values and purpose every step of the way.
1) What does leadership mean to you?
Leadership encapsulates different concepts and key competencies.
For most, leadership is the ability to wheel power, to influence people positively in order to be successful, to bring like-minded individuals together towards a common goal or vision and to translate that vision into reality.
In order to be effective you must figure out what leadership means to you.
2) Why do you want to be a leader? What is your purpose in life?
Most people want to lead because they see themselves in power, in control, with status and doing whatever they want.
However, leaders are always held accountable for their actions, have to serve as models and have to exhibit exemplary behavior.
Without an ethical purpose in mind, they will not be able to sustain their role very long.
If you weren’t a leader, what would you do? What career would you pursue?
11) Are you self-interested or committed to the collective good?
We choose a certain career because our ever-changing needs and desires align with that particular career but not necessarily with the collective good.
In the leadership position, there is a huge discrepancy between hiring the right person with the right competencies for the job, between hiring someone with lesser competencies to feel unthreatened, between hiring someone to serve you and caress your ego.
There is also a difference between wanting the organization to succeed, wanting the team and the project to shine, and taking all the credit for someone else’s work.
Using those skills, leaders should be pushing a vision for their life, for their family or their organization and it shouldn’t matter whether they have the right relationships, enough money, enough favors, or have hired people with the desired skill set.
24) Are you organized and can you meet deadlines?
Leaders don’t have the luxury to procrastinate because it is similar to self-sabotage. However, they are all subject to it to some extent.
Being organized, methodical, pragmatic will help you gain a sense of satisfaction and will increase your chances of success.
25) Who do you look up to?
It is critical to have a role model who will help you improve, achieve your goals and will show you your life purpose.
Your role model is authentic, relatable and can be a family member, a friend in your entourage or someone you barely know.
26) Can you handle change?
Change is a part of life, is a constant and is inevitable. Change shakes things up, disrupts old habits, breathes new life into the workplace and into any project.
Leaders must visibly act out the change, must be ready to do things differently and to think otherwise.
27) What do you hate the most and will not stand for?
You can’t always find out what you like but life has a funny way of putting you in front of the things that you hate the most.
28) Can you accept criticism from others?
Accepting criticism implies that you are able to listen, accept people point of view and give feedback as well.
29) Are you becoming too complacent?
30) What do you want to improve on?
Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!
Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.
At work, leaders are constantly being challenged by coworkers, by the need to conform to the organization culture, to resist to the opinion of others and to work through other external pressure.
Because leadership comes most often from within and requires great energy, self-discipline, strong purpose, maintaining self-esteem is critical to maintaining leadership.
Wondering how to get a bulletproof self-esteem?
What is self-esteem?
Self-esteem corresponds to our self-image and to the opinion that we have of ourselves. It is made of the differences between the way we perceive ourselves, the way we want to be perceived and the way we are actually being perceived.
It is also a feeling of competency, worthiness, efficiency, performance, self-respect. It delimits our sense of identity, self-worth, well-being and constant satisfaction no matter the circumstances.
Self-esteem is the ability to cope with life challenges. It is the belief in our abilities, our values, our potential to confidently demonstrate our abilities and values. Therefore, self-esteem is an important component of leadership.
Self-esteem is an internal quality, is not a constant and can rise or fall throughout life, throughout challenges.
Why is it important?
With a proper amount of self-esteem, you are able to trust your skills, your knowledge, your decisions and your thoughts. Low self-esteem leads to poor relationships, depression, anxiety and anger. Increasing self-esteem amounts to better health and a stronger ability to cope with stressful situations.
As a leader, having a solid self-esteem is necessary to make decisions without fear or hesitation, to think clearly, to trust his or her opinion, to remain optimistic under pressure, to help others feel good about themselves, to build relationships, and to gracefully welcome change.
Furthermore, building self-esteem in your team will help them take pride in their work and make them commit to goals.
How to boost your leadership self-esteem?
Building self-esteem is not an overnight process and requires patience. To boost your leadership self-esteem:
Rewire your thinking process and remember that you are not alone if you are suffering with low self-esteem.
Recall that you cannot please everyone and the first person to please is yourself.
Remember that you cannot be a master at everything and that you must focus on the vital few.
Accept that you cannot control everything, that suffering and joy are part of life and that no one is perfect.
Assess your strengths and weaknesses. Everyone has a different combination of experiences, of strengths and weaknesses that they must accept. This will help you build on the skills that you are good at and operate through your weaknesses.
Accept yourself: learn to spend time alone and to enjoy your own company. Find activities that are fun and that you do well outside of work. Treat yourself kindly and take time off to do things that are pleasurable to you.
Avoid reasoning with your emotions, dwelling on the negative, complaining, self-pity, shifting blame or blowing an issue out of proportion. You can remove the power that emotions and past negative experiences holds over you by writing down on paper or by speaking it out loud.
Always maintain your integrity, treat people fairly and do the right thing, even if it puts you in a difficult situation. This will also help you maintain your self-respect and the respect that people have for you.
Stay authentic. Being fake or hypocritical is not sustainable on the long run and your real self will slowly suffer the consequences.
Be resilient and believe that you can overcome challenges and that you can find solutions to your problems.
Don’t rely on people or other external factors to restore your self-esteem. Compliments only stroke your ego and will have no effect on your self-esteem for long. On the same length, belittling people won’t do the trick either.
As a leader, it is important that you share your knowledge with your team. Retaining information is a sign of weakness, of a desire for control, power and will not lead you to success. On the other hand, your team skills, loyalty and respect will unequivocally be increased.
Take responsibility for your actions, seek solutions instead of creating problems.
Seek positive qualities in your employees, give positive feedback and build a positive work environment. Giving positive feedback doesn’t mean dismissing or sugarcoating negative feedback but it means that you give constructive criticism and make people feel good about their work performance.
Know your team’s strengths and weaknesses.Place them on tasks that employ their strengths, and don’t hesitate to stretch their abilities and responsibilities.
Remove doubt from your employees so they can perform better.
Teach your team to see problems as challenges or opportunities in disguise.Do not punish mistakes and show that it is OK to disagree, to share a dissenting opinion, or to say “I don’t know”.
Mitigate bad behavior within your team and maintain composure no matter the circumstances.
Include playful time in the workplace. This will increase productivity. Contrary to popular bureaucratic and corporate belief, be playful is not a sign of immaturity to carelessness. Instead, it is a way to release painful experiences.
Seek external professional help to sort through bad experiences and memories if necessary.
Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!
Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.
In Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit Of Less,Greg Mckeown teaches us to hone our decisions making and time management skills in order to achieve more to do less and to do better, to filter out the noise and distractions, to find out what we really want out of life and pursue our dreams the most effective and disciplined way possible.
The essence of Essentialism
“Less but better” embodies the ethic of Essentialism. Essentialism is a way of thinking that drives success, that replaces false assumptions that we can do it all, that being busy means being productive, that we must accept every single opportunity that comes our way. Essentialists understand that:
They have the ability to choose before they feel helpless and let someone else make decisions for them.
Hard work does not necessarily pay off or lead to great results. Essentialists therefore learn to distinguish among all opportunities the best and most appropriate, most essential.
Decisions are made by design and not by default. They focus their energy and time on a small portion of activities, and refuse those that achieve their goals.
The exploration and selection process
Essentialists give themselves the liberty to explore everything and anything before making a decisions on what to focus their energy, before committing to one option. To do so, they:
Set aside time to think, to focus on different possibilities, to create space for intense concentration, to read, to meditate.
Visualize the bigger picture and notice the larger issues that matter.
Listen deliberately and observe intensely.
Write a journal, with restraint, until it becomes a habit to keep track of the small changes implemented and to memorize the important events and information.
Take time to play. In the workplace and in adulthood, playing has become trivial and undermined. However, playing sparks creativity, opens people up to see more possibilities, “challenges old assumptions and makes us more receptive to untested ideas”, alleviates stress, improve overall corporate skills.
Make sleep a priority to counter-intuitively remain productive, to increase creativity and sustain a healthy mind.
Apply the 90 percent rule, if unsure of a decision, to avoid committing to too many options in our personal and professional lives. “think about the single most important criterion for that decision, and then simply give the option a score between 0 and 100. If you rate it any lower than 90 percent, then automatically change the rating to 0 and simply reject”. For example, the 90 percent rule is useful to hire the right people and make sure that they are fit from the start.
Say no to the unwanted opportunities that come your way.
Fight the fear of missing out.
The elimination process
Furthermore, Essentialists find the courage, strength and conviction to firmly and resolutely say no to external pressure when they believe it is right and eliminate the nonessentials.
They clarify their goals, their personal and professional mission statements, make them concrete, measurable, meaningful and memorable, identify the activities that align themselves with their mission statements.
Clarifying their goals and missions improves their relationships, their motivation, sense of cooperation, sense of purpose, their jobs, roles. It also helps them focus their energy and time in one direction and therefore increase productivity. In the workplace, employees without a clear mission or values tend to play politics.
Often Nonessentialists are afraid of missing out on an opportunity or are afraid of conflict, of not being conform to expectations, to social norms, but saying no will increase your effectiveness and the respect level. Nonessentialists would be better off if they:
Separated the person from their decisions.
Found different ways to say no politely but firmly. It is critical to be prepared for reactions of annoyance, disappointment or anger from the other party. However, respect usually replaces those emotions in the long run.
Traded the denied nonessential opportunities for better ones.
Realized that respect is more valuable than popularity.
Exercised discipline to remove distractions, cut their losses and stopped investing time, money and energy in nonessentials, dead-end activities.
Broke free from a false sense of ownership to a project and object.
Avoided staying somewhere just because they are afraid of wasting time, losing their investment and ownership.
Admitted their mistakes.
Avoided trying too hard to fit in.
Challenged the status quo.
Took a break before responding to someone and taking on a new commitment.
Set boundaries and viewed them as liberating. Essentialists write down their red flags, deal breakers, lay down their priorities and take heed of negative people.
The execution process
It is critical to come up with a system to execute your essential activities, the right things the right way.
To prepare for wet days or to allocate time to respond to the unexpected, Essentialists create a buffer. The buffer is a contingency plan for difficult circumstances, works as a risk management strategy, ensures some wiggle room to execute their activities. To create a buffer, Essentialists:
Accurately estimate the time of the activity by adding half the time that is expected to accomplish your tasks.
Identify early all obstacles in their plan and remove them beforehand.
Take small steps, increase positive interactions and congratulate themselves and their team for small wins.
Design a routine to improve their ability to execute the essentials, to render the process easy and unconscious, to remove obstacles, to save their energy in the long run, to enhance their creativity and innovation.
Stay in the present, avoid doing too many thing at once as opposed to doing many things and focusing on one thing at a time.
the pursuit of success can be a catalyst for failure. Put another way, success can distract us from focusing on the essential things that produce success in the first place.
Discerning what is essential to explore requires us to be disciplined in how we scan and filter all the competing and conflicting facts, options, and opinions constantly vying for our attention.
By definition, applying highly selective criteria is a trade-off; sometimes you will have to turn down a seemingly very good option and have faith that the perfect option will soon come along.
Essentialism is not about how to get more things done; it’s about how to get the right things done. It doesn’t mean just doing less for the sake of less either. It is about making the wisest possible investment of your time and energy in order to operate at our highest point of contribution by doing only what is essential.
Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit Of Less by Greg Mckeown is destined to overachievers, to ambitious people, and to those who feel like they are spread thin in their personal and professional lives.
Indeed, when we want to be successful, we have a tendency of accepting every opportunity that comes to us, we fear that we will be missing out and we worry about everything. Greg Mckeown shows us that we have the power to choose, that it is OK to turn down a mediocre option, with the faith that a better option comes around.
Also, this book administers practical advice, applicable to leaders, illustrated with great examples, and made me realize the number of things that hinder my productivity and my time management.
At last, Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit Of Less cannot be compared with New Years resolutions but provides a new way of thinking, a new way of life.