Every leader deals with stress. Fortunately understanding the source of our stress can lead to a reduction, and in turn better strategies to manage stress.
Leaders of Unstoppable Organizations understand that stress is often an emotion response to pressures that we place upon ourselves. They invest time to understand what’s causing their stress and then take actions that will reduce or eliminate it.
Consider the following examples:
- Nervousness felt prior to a public presentation might be due to our concern over making an error or saying something inappropriate. By rehearsing the key points to our message (preparation) and making efforts to get to know the audience (taking action) we can often reduce any feelings of stress.
- Anxiety that is experienced when dealing with difficult employee discussions is often due to frustration or not wanting to hurt the feelings of another person. By considering how to best frame our message (preparation) and by having the difficult discussion (taking action) we can reduce the stress.
Here are some questions to help you better understand and minimize the drivers of your stress:
1. Is this real or perceived? Why?
2. Do I have evidence of what I’m concerned about having ever happened? Is the source credible?
3. What are the repercussions of not doing this? Do they warrant my action?
4. What are the benefits of following through? Are there any pitfalls and if so, how do they compare to the benefits?
5. Is there something I can do in the short term that would make the task or action more comfortable?
Obviously this is a difficult emotion to address. If you feel stress is impacting your health you should always seek professional advice. For those instances however where it appears infrequent or is short lived ask yourself the questions above.
Doing so will make you a stronger leader. An Unstoppable Leader.