So often when work becomes stressful and overwhelming, we turn to our tried and true strategies. We look for possible solutions. We enlist colleagues who we think might be able to help us. We try really (really) hard! And nothing works to relieve the stress and overwhelm. And in fact the more we try, the harder everything seems to be.
At this point, we may give up, give in or begin to question ourselves. Have you ever asked yourself “Do I have what it takes to do this job?” or “What if they find out I don’t know how to solve this?” It’s terrible to feel this way but it’s often a temporary feeling brought on by standard work stress.
In other words, it may not be about you.
When my clients feel that none of their solutions are working, I invite them to take some time to focus on themselves.
Two magical things happen when you take your focus off what is NOT working, and focus on your own self-care:
- You receive the benefit of self-care (I’ve never met anyone who had too much self-care.)
- Some of the grid-lock at the office begins to soften. This happens because you stop trying so hard, some time goes by and you are in better shape and therefore more able to deal with the issues at hand.
It may not feel easy to stop trying so hard. In fact, it may fly in the face of every belief you have about your worth and value in the workplace. But think again…
My clients are highly motivated, talented, energetic people who find it very hard to take a breath and slow down when their best efforts are being met with resistance. I understand because I also have that challenge at times.
I recently came across a list of “50 Ways Happier, Healthier and More Successful People Live on Their Own Terms” – and it’s a great list. I’ve already shared it with a couple of clients and in fact, the last time I found myself in need of a new self-care item, I committed to #15: Replace warm showers with cold ones. Brrr! I know that ending a warm and cozy shower with a cold shot of H20 may not sound like self-care, but when I read the benefits – I thought I’d give it a try.
So where are you trying too hard right now? Could you take a step back for a day or even an hour and add in some self-care?
If you give it a try, I’d love to hear the benefits!
Doing polar bear showers in L.A.,