How to cope with feeling totally under pressure at work

Twenty Ten Talent - How to cope with feeling totally under pressure at work

Maybe your manager just handed you a monster assignment with a seemingly impossible deliverable. Or a super important project has gone sideways and you don’t know how to fix it. Guaranteed when you least expect it, or even when you see it coming, your work life can throw up challenges that seem impossible to handle.

If you are feeling under pressure at work, here are a few things to remember as you navigate your way through it.

You are not stupid / dumb / incompetent
You were hired to do this job for a reason. Chances are you beat out a whole bunch of high caliber candidates to get your role in the first place. As you move up in your career facing tough challenges just goes with the territory, regardless of whether or not problem is a result of a mistake, bad luck or just circumstance. Don’t make it harder on yourself than it needs to be by doubting your ability. Even if you wish you’d handled the situation differently, learn from it and move on.

Focus on finding a solution
Early in my career I had a boss who used to say “Okay, you’ve told me the problem. Come to me with a solution. What’s your solution?” Yes, we all want to prevent problems from occurring in the first place, but when issues arise take time to think through the options. Presenting your team and your manager with ideas for solutions to the issue in hand, instead of reverting to a default “this bad thing happened, what do you think we should do?” will enhance your reputation and help solve the challenge faster.

Be objective
Colleagues facing a challenging situation at work can view the same issue from a number of different perspectives. Try to be as objective as possible. Remember, when you reflect on what you are dealing with one week, one month or one year on from now, you may feel differently than you do right now in the moment.

Take time out
If you are feeling under pressure it’s super important to find time to take care of yourself and unwind. Whether it’s making the time for some fresh air, seeing a friend or doing something you enjoy, make it happen. You will be much better equipped to handle your work stuff if you’ve taken time to unwind a little. And it goes without saying, don’t forget to indulge in even more relaxation time when the work nightmare is finally behind you.


Post by Octavia Goredema @OctaviaGoredema

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  1. Pingback: Are you becoming a constant career complainer? - Twenty Ten Talent

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