There aren’t many things I am scared of, but there are a few. One of these is failure. With Halloween approaching, the universe found it appropriate to give me a challenge that would make me quiver and it happened at work.
Let me tell you a story of good and evil.
I was given an assignment in preparation for the Blue Jeans Ball. The Blue Jeans Ball isn’t evil – in fact it is a lot of fun because it involves wonderful food, people and dancing – and my assignment isn’t evil, but the online event management (OEM) platform I was using to complete this assignment was going to be the scariest thing I faced this week. And for the purpose of this analogy, OEM is very evil.
I had gotten a brief tutorial on OEM and felt well prepared to create the form that our attendees would use to register to come to the event. I sat down with my notes and an Arizona Green Tea and got to work. Or, so I thought I would get to work, but all the sudden my confidence had dwindled. Each move I tried to make on the site was blocked with the light saber of OEM.
My Jedi mind tricks were failing me and I was becoming incredibly frustrated. This technological battle did not have to end in death. So, while taking a break from the battle of OEM, I compiled a list of steps to take while facing a (seemingly) insurmountable challenge. Hopefully these will serve as a reminder for you the next time you reach your breaking point.
1. Stop. Breathe. There is no reason in the world you can’t take a break. Unless you are on an absurd deadline, you should always walk away from a project that is frustrating you. Walking away and coming back to something gives you a clear head and usually fresh vision. Using and learning proper breathing techniques is one of the most beneficial things that can be done for both short and long term physical and emotional health. (Breathing Exercises)
2. Pull your resources. Someone has probably had this problem before you. If not someone in your office, try Google. Phone a friend. Pull your online social networking resources. Twitter is the ultimate venue for crowdsourcing. (10 Kicka** Crowdsourcing Sites for Your Business)
3. Remember: you are smarter than the average bear. I quote, Kelly Lance when I say this. It is of the utmost importance you have confidence in yourself. You got the job you have for a reason. Remember that someone believed in you first. Trust in the confidence they had in you and don’t let them, or yourself down.
4. Curse! When all else fails, it is important to excuse yourself to the bathroom and release the longest chain of exploitives you can come up with. This is an experience I find to be carthartic and rewarding. (*Note, make sure your office restroom is sound proof first).
After I completed steps 1-3 (fortunately OEM didn’t take me to step 4) I sat back down at my laptop and created a perfectly functional form that will go live this Monday, November 1st at 9AM EST. Have a safe and happy Halloween and don’t let anything you are scared of defeat you.