How many times has your day been ruined by office drama from your boss, colleague or co-worker?
If you’re like many people I talk with—it’s more often than you’d like to experience! The frustration of what they say, how they said it, or the end-around they pulled leaves you drained and angry. You may be wondering why what seemed like a productive working relationship has now become high-maintenance.
Unfortunately, this is common in the workplace, and it happens at all levels (including my senior level executive clients). Depending on how you handle or and address the situation—it will take a toll on you both mentally and physically. And this undercurrent of stress carried over a long time will wear you out and pull you down. Especially if you tend to take the path of the turtle (avoidance).
What do you do? Be intentional about the outcome you want. Before taking any action, consider these questions:
- When did this first start?
- Was there a specific event or conversation that could have contributed to this person’s response?
- What brought this to my attention and how bad is it? (Not speaking to me, talking to my colleagues, heard about it from my boss, yelling and inappropriate)
- Can I pinpoint anything I did that contributed to this? (Be honest if you want resolution)
- Has this happened before, with this person, in another position or at another company?
If you are in an abusive working situation it may be best to involve your HR department after considering the steps below. Abuse of any kind is inappropriate.
5 STEPS TO CREATING CALM IN WORKING RELATIONSHIPS
1 – Take Full View of the Landscape
Step back and take a 360 look around you, how politically charged is this situation?
Has this happened before?
Is this a “pattern” of behavior for this individual?
It’s important to understand why this may have happened and how you contributed to it whether consciously aware of it or not. As uncomfortable as it is—it’s important to be honest with yourself and take full responsibility of your actions. After all, that’s the only thing you have any control over.
2- What Do You Want to Change and Why?
How did you respond in the moment the issue occurred?
Did you strongly disagree with what was said—in a meeting or conversation, but said nothing?
If what was said was inaccurate—who needs to be informed?
If there was a screaming match, then the lack of professionalism rests on both sides.
Whatever the issue, take a minute, when you are not emotionally wound up to clearly define what you want to have happen.
3- What Is Your Dominant Thought?
In work drama, you often mull over and lose sleep thinking about the person or situation. And be honest, most of the time, you’re confirming that you were right, or how what they did was uncalled for spending the day and night running, running, running on the hamster thought wheel.
What is it that has you so frustrated, angry or upset? Listen closely to what you’re processing—life offers you a mirror in these challenging moments. What is dominating your thoughts? What do you have the ability to shift in your own patterns, communications and behaviors?
4- Shift Your Perspective
You cannot solve a problem in the same energy it was created. To resolve the problem requires that you shift your perspective and begin to focus on the Solution. Once your dominant thought is focused on the Solution, you’ll find new ideas coming to you, you’ll feel better and your emotional state will improve. It’s all energy.
5- Don’t Pre-Determine the Outcome
I’ve had many a conversation with clients, friends and family who tell me “Exactly” how the other person will respond. If you go in to a conversation with that mindset, you can expect that result. If you paint someone into a corner and don’t allow any room for them to respond any different—most often they won’t!
My clients are always blown away when they let go of the pre-determined outcome of what they other person will do or say, and find the other individual not only listens, but is open to clearing the air, or to considering a different approach, or to collaborating in a way that is more mutually beneficial.
Your Mindset Matters.
Your Energy Precedes You.
BE IN THE RIGHT MINDSET AND ENERGY BEFORE ATTEMPTING A RESOLUTION.
…It’s not a “difficult conversation,” it’s a productive (adult) conversation to reset and clear the air.
…You don’t need to label this person as difficult, or the problem child—you’re giving them the opportunity to be heard and understand them better. Maybe no one really listened before and this is how they get your attention?
…It’s not worth losing sleep over, visualize the outcome and feel how nice it is to enjoy a calm, collaborative and productive working environment and relationship. It will benefit you, your colleague, your team and everyone around you (whether virtual or in the office).
The Success Whisperer