Today’s post is written by Ivy Ray, Account Manager at SafeSourcing Inc.
Stress is a part of life for all of us. As long as we face encroaching deadlines, competing responsibilities, overloaded schedules, last-minute crises, financial troubles, and social conflicts, we’re going to encounter it often. So, when my cardiologist tells me ‘you have to keep yourself stress free’, my response is who does that? Doctors have typically been telling their patients this for decades, which causes people to spas out when confronted with a stressful situation. The new science of stress reveals that how you think about stress matters.
Kelly McGonigal, PhD, a health psychologist, has a life-changing solution: “make stress your friend”. In her 2013 TED Talk, Dr. McGonigal presented a scientific study which studied the stress patterns and responses of 30K people for 8 years. The finding was that stress was deadly for those who believed that stress was bad for their health. Stress is not the culprit, but your thoughts surrounding stress can kill you. You should view your body’s stress response as helping you to get through a tough situation.
Anyone struggling with stress at work might take a few pointers from Major League Baseball’s mental-skills coaches. Currently, 26 of the 30 MLB teams employ sports psychologists or mental-skills coaches to help players’ mental game which can make the difference between success and failure. Ken Ravizza, a mental-skills coach for the Chicago Cubs, teaches players to stay aware of their mental state by imagining an inner traffic signal: It’s green when your body is calm and the mind focused. It turns yellow when your heart rate and blood pressure start rising and you begin having trouble focusing. It flashes red when you start believing your self-doubts. Your muscles tighten and you lose control. Dr. Ravizza directs players to choose a focal point to look at during tense moments, such as a foul pole or spot on their glove, and imbue it with special meaning.
Jonathan Fader, a former mental-skills coach for the New York Mets, coached a self-employed trader who worried so much about hitting his monthly profit targets that his performance began to slide. He advised him to let go of the outcome and focus on attaining the mental state he hoped to experience after he succeeded—calm, masterful and capable of quick, rational decisions. By improving his performance on measures he could control, the trader began netting better monthly results. We can’t always control stressful situations, but we can control our thoughts and how we deal with them.
For more information on how SafeSourcing can assist you in exploring your procurement solutions for your business or on our “Risk Free” trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service Representative. We have an entire customer services team waiting to assist you today. We look forward to your comments.