Being a business owner, an employee or even an entrepreneur can mean so much more than work and business. It's a reflection of the mind, the heart, the soul, and the passion that keeps us moving forward every single day. For many of us in any working world, frustration weaves in and out of our professional careers in many forms. Frustration pushes our buttons, tests us, and pushes us to the edge and back.
If you're anything like me, you take serious pride in the work you do and the professional relationships you work hard to establish. Work makes me happy and all of the things that come along with being a business owner truly satisfy me, but I'll be the first to admit this; the bumps and barriers that make appearances in my work life really hit me hard. I like doing good work with positive people and when the work gods throw a stick in that, I'm not a happy camper. It's easy to play it cool and pretend these things don't affect us but it is damn hard to genuinely remain unbothered. That's when I realized that the advice I was getting from professionals around me was hurting me more than it was helping me. The following things I've learned that I am going to share with you are not what you're used to hearing, but I think you'll appreciate where it's coming from.
1. Dwell on it. Yes, I said dwell on it. Let the situation or whatever is affecting you really get to you. Let it do what it does to your ego and your corporate feelings and then acknowledge why you're upset, write it down and have your moment. You will not successfully move on from whatever bothered you until you allow yourself this time. I've heard these phrases so many times: "Don't let it bother you," "You're better than that, don't stress," and my favorite, "Just forget about it." These are terrible pieces of advice mainly because they are almost completely impossible to achieve. Seriously though, if you're verbally expressing what is bothering you to someone, you are way beyond forgetting about it. We don't allow ourselves to be human enough sometimes. If you need to cry about it, go cry! Allow your emotions to play out rather than trying to mask them for whatever reasons we've convinced ourselves make sense.
2. Disagreements, different opinions on what's best for the business, and at times even arguments will occur in the workplace. Wrap your head around this for a second; even if you're non-confrontational and a people pleaser like I am, it WILL happen. That being said, keep this in mind: If someone doesn't understand you or if someone doesn't respect you, it will NOT erase or eliminate all of the amazing things you've done so far. You are hard working, you are employed or running a business and you are where you are for a reason. Keep on doing the progressive and dedicated things that have gotten you this far, continue to innovate, and don't let this barrier disrupt your path. We are so obsessed with being modest that we forget to pat ourselves on the back for all of the things we manage to do each day so toot your own horn! You're awesome and don't you forget it.
3. Move on! Well I let you dwell, but if you thought I wasn't going to tell you to toughen up eventually think again friends. After you've taken your moment and figured out what boiled your blood or terrified you, think of your next step and act on it. Have the conversation, send the email, do the project and be done with it. Life is too short both socially and professionally to let it affect the great work you are capable of doing tomorrow. Another side confession from me: When I get in these moods, I tend to take longer than I'm proud of to get to the 'move on' phase. I also tend to take it out on people around me who don't deserve it. Bless the patience of my amazing boyfriend because I really dwell for too long. Of course this step is easier said than done but I have faith in you.
4. Get rid of toxic relationships. I know the first thing you're thinking is "What am I supposed to do? Quit my job to get away from a bad boss or co-worker?" Yes and no. If you have that luxury and you KNOW you have that luxury, start looking elsewhere. Why not? Your sanity and happiness are more important than stability and comfort. If that's not an option for you, and I totally understand it's not for many people, then turn the toxic relationship around. You are in control of your attitude and the types of interactions you have. Change your attitude towards that person you bump heads with and more importantly, change your mindset you carry around with yourself and move from a toxic to a civil relationship. This is one of the best forms of spring cleaning you can ever take part in.
There are so many lessons to learn and experience both within and out of the workplace and they will almost always be easier said than done. Stay in control of your professional life and truly visualize where you want to be and how you are going to get there. The mind is the most powerful weapon in your arsenal and you have the ability to go where you wish. Until next time, keep working hard and achieving your goals. You are a breathtaking talented soul!