How Can You Transform Doom and Gloom Into Opportunity?

In our newsletter last week I spoke about Mercury Retrogrades.  Well folks, on Monday NYC experienced a system-wide shut down of the Long island Railroad (LIRR) when a small fire occurred in a main switching station.  Reports were quick to say that the fire was caused by the weather.  However the most mind-boggling tidbit was that this switching station depended on equipment from 1913 and there was no back up for it. Can you imagine a system that carries 245,000 riders daily into NYC, in 2010 using equipment just under 100 years old and not having a back up in place?  It’s a clear-cut demonstration of a short-term mindset on the part of LIRR management.  There is no strategic thinking here, no preventative equipment upgrading.  These are not the actions of an engaged organization.  I’m not a gambling woman but I would bet money a survey of workers who were assigned to this switching station in the last 50 years would show they repeatedly advised management the equipment needed to be upgraded.  It is situations like this one that erode the trust of the workforce.  It creates malaise, which is hard to undo. Those of us on the east coast have been experiencing our fourth straight day of rain.  Although it affects many of us, most of whom would prefer to be on a sofa reading an interesting book, its also a great time to get to some of those items on your to do list that never seem to get done.

Sometimes we just don’t feel like working.  Our energy dips and it’s hard to rally and get energized to complete the tasks before us.  Here are a few tips I’ve used to cope when feeling this way:

  1. Acknowledge what you are feeling and take a break.  Just saying I don’t want to be here can create a shift in energy. The more you resist a feeling or emotion the more it persists.  If possible take the day off, or a more modest solution do something you really like to do sometime during the day-it could be as simple as calling a friend.
  2. Shift your physiology.  If you can take a walk or exercise break that helps. If time is extremely limited stand with knees bent, feet shoulder-width apart and shake for 60 seconds.  It helps your blood flow and gives each cell in your body a massage.
  3. Sometimes we don’t act like the responsible adults we are.  Ask yourself if what you are doing must be done today.  Can it be done tomorrow, or in a few hours?  I have learned when I force myself to work on something when my heart and energy are not in it, the task takes two to three times longer to complete and the end product usually leaves something to be desired.  Actually this is more costly for the company.  So be a courageous adult and tell your boss you need to take a few hours, or you are going to go home early.  You are likely to be pleasantly surprised.  Many managers are okay with such requests when used sparingly.

Let us know any tips you may have that work for you.

We are coming up on the last week of August.  Outside of NYC most kids are back in school, here they’ll begin on September 8th .  I don’t know about you but my time clock has September be the start of the year.  I’m using this late August down time to plant the seeds of opportunity I know are forthcoming in “the new year”.  Have a great week.