Have you ever woken up on the wrong side of the bed? Who hasn’t?
Last fall Caroline Webb, CEO of Sevenshift and author of “How to Have a Good Day,” spoke at the Pennsylvania Conference for Women and shared her secrets that could transform your working life. Below is her 4-step solution to turning your day around.
- Improve your reality
“Let’s edit our reality,” Webb began. Basically, our brains can only process so much at any given time. We subconsciously filter out what we don’t want to see. Let’s go back to the notion of waking up on the wrong side of the bed. On days like that, everything seems to go from bad to worse. We go through each meeting, chore or appointment with a negative lens, creating a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Instead, we need to reset our filter. Ask yourself, “what’s my aim?” Your predisposition may not be serving your objective so again ask, “where do you most want to put your attention?”
- Steal back your time
How can we make time go further? While there’s no way to literally add hours to the day, we can make better use of our time by increasing our productivity.
Rather than multitasking or jumping from emails to reporting and back to your inbox, batch or sort like-items on your to-do list. Our brains have to switch off one task to switch onto another, so we’re faster when we single-task.
- Change your frame
We are pre-programed to get defensive at the sign of threat, or go into discovery mode for a reward. Even subtle stress or the smallest commotion can throw you off task. To get back on track when facing a challenge, ask:
- What’s the ideal outcome here? What’s the first small step toward that?
- When have I previously solved something like this? What does that tell me I could do now?
- What are things working well? What can I learn from that?
- Shift others’ moods
It’s hard enough to re-shift your own focus, but what about others around you? After all, emotions are contagious. Webb reminds us to use emotional intelligence and consider others’ state of mind and what may be going on within their reality.
For example, if a colleague walks in late to a meeting huffing, puffing and complaining about their commute, don’t let them sidetrack the group. Instead, say “we’re glad you were able to make it. We were just discussing …” This will refocus the individual and keep the meeting on point.