What are you Bringing with you to Work Every Day?
Think about it…from the moment you wake up till the time that you sleep and even during your sleep there is something or the other which runs in your mind. We would really want for our heads to be blank slates at least at some point in time. But the reality is that thoughts do not easily leave us and keep running in our head through every moment of life.
These myriad thoughts and feelings that emanate from real, experienced situations and those that happen somewhere within the recesses of our minds affect us significantly. They shape the way we look at things, situations and people and also start impacting the way we feel about them and eventually how we respond to them.
So what is it that you bring to your work every day?
It is an array of thoughts and feelings.
This array of thoughts and feelings reflects how you have been experiencing the world and people around you.
Your experiencing of the world and people around you is in turn shaped by the experiences you have had and it further impacts how you respond to them.
Sounds convoluted doesn’t it?
It is complicated and is in fact a vicious cycle.
Our past impinges upon the present and the present shapes the way we look at the past and what we anticipate in the future.
With this as the content ask yourself: Are you bringing to work the things which will motivate you and make you feel great about yourself, thereby enhancing your sense of confidence and your self-esteem? Or is it that you are brining with you distress and disturbance, baggage from the past and baggage from the difficulties that surround you today?
For a majority of the people it is a mixture of both. But there are those who operate on the extremes. And for those who do operate on the extremes the problem can manifest itself in extreme ways as well.
Too confident can be taken to be pompous, arrogant and oftentimes aggressive. Traits that may help you achieve your targets but won’t necessarily go a long way in helping you make friends at the workplace. You may be the one people look up to and are also perhaps envious of but do they necessarily like you…perhaps not.
If you are on the other extreme of the spectrum where everything that happened or is currently happening in your life is affecting you then you have the problems of being the one who people start viewing as being incompetent or the one who just will not finish the work that is allotted or if the work is done then there will be a qualitative deficiency in some manner so to say.
Does that mean that the middle path is where you should be?
Staying in the middle requires a lot of effort, especially if you fall in any of the extremes. There would be constant feedback coming your way that modification is needed in some form or the other. But taking this huge step towards transformation is never an easy one. But there are always some things that can be helpful.
1. Know yourself. There are traits and aspects of your temperament, which if you understand well enough, you would be able to push yourself to modulate. Make yourself cognizant of these.
2. Slow it down. Don’t be in a rush to get through things or to get the results. Instead find an even pace at which you can operate to ensure that you are constantly moving in your tasks and work and are also creating space for others to move with you.
3. Work on your weaknesses. If you are task oriented then look at the relationships and if you are too emotionally and relationship oriented then focus on the tasks. Push yourself towards making your weakness a strength which will always stand you in good stead.
4. Remember people are important. Don’t forget to take the people you work with along with you in your vision. Developing a vision which encompasses everyone allows for better relationships in the workplace always, affecting the work environment and your work.
5. Understand your triggers. Whether it is your trigger for anger, irritability, sadness or distress, knowing them is paramount in learning to gain control over your reactions to these triggers.
6. Don’t personalise things. Most individuals tend to personalise that which is being said or done. Learn to look at the content of what is being communicated and make a conscious effort to evaluate what is said and its benefits in an objective manner. Sometimes this can be difficult. Getting the help of someone to aid you can be helpful.
7. Don’t magnify the meaning of what is being communicated. This happens more when we are feeling overwhelmed. Making an effort to recognise the emotional state you are experiencing before you attribute meaning to the communications you are receiving may be able to help you maintain your sense of balance.
8. Be open to feedback. Criticism can come your way at any point in time. Mentally prepare yourself for the fact that others can disagree with you and shape your attitude into one that allows you to engage with others’ opinions in a way that you can derive that which is best for you from their communications.
9. Remind yourself that you bring a lot to the workplace every day in terms of thoughts and emotions. Determine if there is some significant thing which may be affecting you today. Take charge of it by being aware of it and constantly reminding yourself about it so you don’t let it take charge of your actions and reactions.
10. Most importantly, if you are stuck somewhere then speak about it to anyone you can trust. Having a mentor or coach in this regard can be rather helpful.