“When the going gets tough, the tough get going.”
How do people remain calm and cope under pressure – whether it is in the face of a major corporate drama or when they’re on the verge of a melt-down due to a relentless workload and impossible deadlines?
Some interesting research from is helping to develop an understanding of how people can develop their own personal ‘resilience’ and respond better to the pressure that work (and sometimes ‘life’) increasingly throws at us.
The following practical tips can help you in any setting, cope better with difficult challenges and unwanted change.
1. Find your sense of purpose
Having structure, commitment and meaning in life will help make you more resilient. A clear sense of purpose can help you assess setbacks better and look at them within the bigger picture. One of the best ways to do this is to think about “who” and “what” is important to you when you are under pressure.
2. Develop your problem solving strategies
The way people perceive situations, solve problems and manage change is crucial. Take a step back and think about how you approach difficult issues, how often you follow objective logic or how often your judgment is clouded by emotional responses and irrational thinking.
3. Develop your self-awareness
The more self-aware you are the more resilient you will be. Try developing a stronger belief in yourself and your capabilities by looking back at memorable and challenging experiences (both positive and negative) and thinking about what impact these had on your personal development.
4. Embrace change
Flexibility is an essential part of resilience. By learning how to be more adaptable, you will be better equipped to respond when faced with unexpected work challenges or a personal crisis. This often involves getting outside your comfort zone and increasing your curiosity and openness to new experiences both in and out of work. Resilient people often use an adverse event as an opportunity to branch out in new directions.
5. Become a continuous learner
Learn new skills, gain new understanding and apply these during times of change. Don’t hold onto old behaviors and bad habits, especially when it’s obvious that they don’t work anymore. Start thinking about what drives your preference towards these old behaviors and bad habits and whether they are truly helpful for the situations you now face.
6. Get enough sleep
When you feel stressed, it can be all too easy to neglect your own needs. Losing your appetite, ignoring exercise and not getting enough sleep are all common reactions to both everyday pressure and a crisis situation. By taking care of your own needs, you can boost your overall health and resilience and be fully ready to face life’s challenges.
7. Do the things you enjoy
In situations of increased work pressure it can be extremely difficult to still do the things you enjoy. People often focus on solving the challenge at hand and may work longer and later and to their own detriment overlook other parts of their life. You will feel revitalized if you continue to do things and take part in activities that you enjoy and make you feel good about yourself, even when under pressure.