When Rory Rowland, then CEO of a small financial institution, encountered a petty workplace conflict between two of his employees–“I don’t even remember what it was about, but it was over an insignificant matter, like the way one of them looked at the other”–he didn’t immediately address the problem.
That turned out to be a big mistake. “It escalated to the point where they were snarling at each other. They weren’t professional at all. They would just fling [stuff] at each other’s work area.” This might be funny when it’s on a sitcom, but not when it’s happening in your business.
Challenges are good. They help us grow. But what is not good is the frustration that comes with the challenge. If you take that challenge and it breeds into stress, this is bad news. We might blame the surroundings, the people around us, or our boss for all the stress. But in reality, this stress originates from our own mind. And to eliminate that stress we need to adopt a 3-step process and win the tug and war within us.
Stress feeds conflict – & conflict breeds anger, unhappiness, and resentment. It is easy to fool ourselves that stress isn’t bad at all. But in reality when under pressure our minds to lose track to reason, to think, to communicate well. Our ability to process & uses information is compromised. We have more difficulty with being flexible and open to new ideas. We overreact to minor irritants, and everything & everyone starts looking like a threat.
Here we would like to provide you a 3-step process to interrupt this vicious cycle
If you really want to break this barrier, the first step is to become more aware of your feelings and your emotions. The second step is to manage and overcome your emotions, and the third step is to start seeing people as people rather than threats.
Step 1: Develop Self-Awareness to interrupt the frustration-stress-conflict cycle, you need to recognize what is causing the feeling of anger, scared, or threatened. Telling yourself you don’t have the time or are not inclined to “work on yourself” will keep you stuck in a bunker mentality at work. Instead, make time and tap into curiosity and courage to try to figure out what kinds of situations (and people) send you into the stratosphere. The more you know about your triggers, the better you can control your emotions.
Step 2: Employ emotional self-control to get your brain start thinking in the right direction. Once you know, you can employ other tactics that can help you limit & use your emotions for the best of people and yourself. This will help you to channel your emotions and use them for your own benefit and take better decisions. The truth be told. Negativity is a mind game and you can control how you treat that negativity.
Step 3: Network with your co-workers. This is important because everyone is bringing something new to the table. If you let others help you your stuff, they will start sharing ideas that can benefit you too. Instead of “I, me and mine” start thinking in the direction of “We, us and ours” This mindset will add multiplier effect and be good for everyone in general.
Schedule your time for self-reflection. If you’re an Entrepreneur you need to practice mindfulness. Most of the Entrepreneurs master the art of delegation. You can do delegation yourself, but I would prefer online task management system for Entrepreneurs that can save you tons of time and your mind will also be at peace. Start small. Divide your project into smaller chunks and achieve one set at a time. No need to multitask, just focus on one thing at a time. And always look on the brighter side of things.
Lean into your natural empathy and compassion. Concern for others, empathy, and compassion help us to survive and thrive. Like self-reflection, this muscle may not be one you use often at work. But you can get better pretty quickly if you make a point to ask yourself questions that help you understand others’ points of view. Try these:
- What is he thinking and feeling about the situation?
- How is she different from me? How are we the same?
- What can I do to make him feel better about this situation and about me?
As you ask yourself these questions, remember that we all have a story — loves, sorrows, and joys in life and at work. And chances are that while another person’s story might seem different from yours, our human experiences are remarkably similar. As tempting as it is to blame others for our strife-ridden companies, the best way to make work a more enjoyable, productive experience is to lean into our natural empathy, learn to care for ourselves and others, and take responsibility for our feelings and actions.