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How to Guarantee Strong Performance Under Pressure - Lolly Daskal |

Focus on your actions

Craft a routine or system for getting the work done. Focus on your daily actions and carry out your plan with discipline and determination.

A routine can help prevent panic and distraction, allowing you to focus on the task at hand.

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How to Guarantee Strong Performance Under Pressure - Lolly Daskal |

How to Guarantee Strong Performance Under Pressure - Lolly Daskal |

https://www.lollydaskal.com/leadership/how-to-guarantee-strong-performance-under-pressure/

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Key Ideas

Visualize the destination

Take a moment to visualize the calm after the storm: the work is done and done well, and you’re celebrating with your team. 

Positive visualization can alleviate pressure and help you relax and stay focused, reminding you that even the most intense situations eventually resolve.

Motivate yourself with a reward

People who know their hard work will be tangibly rewarded tend to perform better than those who don’t

Whether it’s a vacation, something you’ve been wanting to buy, or dinner at your favorite restaurant, pick a reward that will keep you going and pretend it’s already yours.

Focus on your actions

Craft a routine or system for getting the work done. Focus on your daily actions and carry out your plan with discipline and determination.

A routine can help prevent panic and distraction, allowing you to focus on the task at hand.

Busy vs. Productive

Most of us think we’re accomplishing something as long as we’re busy doing things, but that’s not necessarily the truth. It’s a matter of doing the things that help us accomplish our goals. 

Look at the things you’re doing and delegate or eliminate all the unnecessary activities that are taking up your time and interfering with your success.

Slow down to speed up

Instead of rushing into things because we feel pressured to do something, the better approach is to slow down, think about what you want to do and take some time to formulate a plan. 

Give yourself the space to be creative, innovative and productive instead of just reacting in the moment.

Take control where you can

 ... and let go where you can’t.

When you focus on the things you can’t control, the pressure—and your anxiety—are intensified. Focus on the things you can control and let the rest take care of itself.

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Get a Head Start

Before leaving your workspace, or before going to bed, take 10 minutes to look over the next day’s commitments.

Decide what you’ll do first. Look at that to-do list and decide whether any tasks on it can be delegated to someone else or crossed off the list altogether.

Do Your Most Dreaded Task First

Every one of us has one or more tasks on our to-do list that we dread doing.

Do it first thing. Writer Michael Hyatt talks about slaying your dragons before breakfast—there’s nothing more motivating for the rest of your day than crossing that monster off your list first thing in the morning.

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Take control

Most of us are unable to do our best thinking when we're under stress at work. The problem is, it is often the time when we need to be at our best.

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How our brains process information

Our brains process information in two ways:

  • Fast: Our fast brain is highly efficient, and makes decisions automatically by focusing on a few details it finds important, based on past experience.
  • Slow: Our slow brain uses control processing to make decisions, and takes into account more information.

Our brains spend most of their time in fast mode. However, we should avoid relying on our fast brain when we are in a new situation or when we are under stress.

How to counteract your fast brain
  • Pay attention: Your brain will default to making fast decisions, not accurate ones. 
  • Take some deep breaths. It will help you calm your nervous system.
  • Be curious. Ask yourself what story you are telling yourself. Then ask if it is true.

With practice, you can learn to control your brain's knee-jerk reactions in distressing situations.

The Relationship Between Goals And Burning Out
The Relationship Between Goals And Burning Out

Effective goal-setting underlies the fundamental aspect of your motivation and keeps stressful situations at bay.

If you don’t set goals in positive, attainable ways, you may fall i...

Reorganizing Your Goal Hierarchy

As losing resources is more likely to cause burnout than gaining resources is to mitigate it, dealing with the negative aspects is more beneficial than using positive “band-aid” fixes. You want to drive down uncertainty and inefficiency to ensure that you aren’t doing unnecessary tasks and minimize your emotional exhaustion. To do that:

  1. Create a chart and place your major goal at its top, followed by layers of very specific subgoals needed to attain the major goal.
  2. Find and fix the inefficiencies in your goal hierarchy.
  3. Determine the attainability of each goal.
Burnout Symptoms And Signs Of Exhaustion
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Impaired concentration/ forgetfulness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Anxiety
  • Increased illness
  • Physical symptoms
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Dizziness
  • Gastrointestinal pain
  • Depression
  • Interpersonal problems.

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Become A Faster Learner
Become A Faster Learner
  1. Find someone who shouldn’t excel at a skill but does anyway. They’ll have insights that regular experts lack thus giving you more ways to pursue the skill.
  2. Ignore the details...
Building Rapport Remotely

To better build rapport and counter isolation do the following:

  • smile, tilt your chin lower so you're not looking down on them, and slow down your speech during your vid...
Relying On Text The Right Way

Voice and video calls can help you feel more in touch with your team and avoid the issues of asynchronous communication like time lags or misunderstandings.

However, you'll likely spend a lot of your day communicating via text as it’s a good way to interact without interrupting their work. So you need to be able to get your point across clearly and simply, show empathy and understanding, and be efficient to avoid wasted time.

Staying Up To Date

Remote workers can feel overwhelmed by the amount of text they have to process. So finding ways to keep on top of what's going on is imperative for communicating efficiently with others.

Create archive lists and CC irrelevant emails to them, so you can save and share them without flooding non-involved people. 

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Systematic approach
Most people jump straight from finding a problem to attempting to solve it.

Having a systematic approach to how you deal with problems, as opposed to just going by gut and feelings, ca...

Study the problem first

Detectives and investigators use the process. They ask both obvious and unthinkable questions.

Get close and collect information about how the problem is manifesting.  Understand where the problem does and doesn’t happen, when the problem started, and how often the problem occurs to generate critical insight for the problem-solving effort.

Question for great answers
  • Don’t look for solutions immediately; Keep redefining the problem until you arrive at the root cause.
  • Don’t try to guess the solution; try to understand how the obstacles, or challenges manifest first.
  • Gather data to analyze all potential root causes.
  • Consider all options, regardless of how irrelevant they currently appear.
  • Find a way to connect the dots. Make better analogies. One good analogy is worth three hours of discussion.

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Connect with people

When you’re starting out working with your new colleagues, be yourself. Don’t put on an act. 

Show them you’re human and making some well-intended efforts to st...

Be prepared

Having applied for the job, you probably know a good amount about the business anyway, but it often helps to do some more homework.  

Find out about the history, philosophy, and values that have built the company you’re now part of.

Immerse yourself

Really enjoy finding out everything you can about your new culture. 

Simply show your passion for working with your new team by finding out what it really means to be part of the team and the business.

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Stress can come in many forms
Stress can come in many forms

It often arise from something beyond our control, whether a breakup or loss of someone dear. We can even feel anxiety when trying something new.

We tend to desire a quick-f...

Awareness minimizes stress

Anxiety tends to build over time. Through awareness, we can help minimize its effects.

Our anxiety is trying to help us. Our body is trying to tell us it has new needs. Start noticing what makes you anxious and what takes you out, as well as when it happens.

Meditate to calm your nervous system

Meditation as a practice is useful to tune into awareness and to calm your nervous system.

To start, take a minute or two to pay attention to where your mind wanders. When you're able to begin noticing problematic situations through the practice of awareness, you can stop doing them.

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High-pressure moments as a (fun) challenge

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One of many opportunities

Is this high-pressure situation a good opportunity? Sure. Is it the only opportunity you will ever have for the rest of your life? Probably not.

Before an interview or a big meeting, give yourself a pep talk: "I will have other interviews" (or presentations or sales calls). 

Focus on the task

Instead of worrying about the outcome, worry about the task at hand.

That means developing tunnel vision. When you keep your eye on the task at hand (and only the task at hand), all you can see is the concrete steps necessary to excel.

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