- Elon Musk, Investor & Entrepreneur
The modern workplace can take a mental and physical toll on even the most devoted professional. Even if you love what you do, you’ll eventually start to feel the strain of your work. You might begin to see performance tips, mood swings, and general discontent… even though you have your dream job.
The truth is that daily life can be rough, particularly in the COVID-19 era! But that’s alright; there are ways in which you can improve your resilience and boost your work performance over the long-term. Let’s look at how to improve your resilience at work and throughout the rest of your life.
ALWAYS TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF
The first thing you should always remember is that you need to take care of yourself, both physically and mentally. This translates specifically to:
- getting enough sleep every night – adults need between seven and eight hours of uninterrupted rest. Don’t join the rat race of overenthusiastic professionals comparing how little sleep they get
- eating enough fruits and vegetables and other nutritious foods. You are what you eat, so make sure you fuel your body with great stuff and you’ll have the energy to perform well throughout the day
- practice mental wellness routines and habits, like meditation or yoga. You should also look into hobbies that refresh your mental energy and give you enough time to just be yourself
- maintain good friendships and familial relationships. Having a strong support network is key to emotional health
If you do all these steps, you’ll feel a lot better and you’ll feel much tougher when life gives you significant challenges.
RESTRUCTURE THE WAY YOU THINK ABOUT NEGATIVE EVENTS
However, even with all the preparation in the world, you’ll still occasionally encounter negative events either at work or in your personal life. The key here is to restructure how you think about those negative events instead of letting them drag you down even further.
Say that you get laid off from work because of Coronavirus-related reasons. It’s tempting to slide into despair and wonder if you’ll ever get another job in your industry again.
But a much healthier way to look at this setback is as a temporary condition that can easily be overcome with the right determination and strategy. Whether or not you’ll actually be able to get your same job back is irrelevant: the point is that you look at things positively and don’t think about negative events as the final word in your story.
CHOOSE TO LEARN FROM MISTAKES/FAILURES
Similarly, any time you make a mistake or fail at something in your professional career, try to learn from the incident instead of worrying about what people think of your performance or how they might be disappointed. You can’t avoid making mistakes; it’s just a part of being human. But you can control how you respond to those mistakes.
It’s a much better strategy to look at how you failed at something and incorporate those lessons into your next attempt. Even better, managers and coworkers will be impressed by this attitude and will be more willing to give you a second chance.
This attitude extends to everything you do, whether it’s for a professional work assignment, with a personal relationship, or when trying to be more social outside of work.
KEEP GOOD PERSPECTIVE
It’s critical to keep a good perspective if you want to improve your resilience at work and at home. For instance, many people are struggling with COVID-19 lockdowns and the requisite mental health issues that crop up when people are forced to stay in isolation for long periods of time.
However, many of the most mentally resilient people recognize that they’re fortunate to be healthy or to be employed even if they have to work at home. Perspective truly is everything when it comes to your emotional and mental outlook.
You can even extend this perspective idea to the aforementioned commitment to learning from your failures. If you look at failures as opportunities to learn instead of reflections on your ultimate potential, you’ll face challenges with zeal and optimism, and be much more resilient when you do eventually fall down and proverbially scrape your knees.
PRACTICE CONFIDENCE BUILDING
We’d recommend consciously building up your confidence over time. This can take several different forms:
- you might practice telling yourself optimistic or positive statements in the mirror. It might feel silly at first, but it’s actually a wonderful way to boost your own confidence and help you feel better about yourself. As you can imagine, this does wonders for improving your resilience
- you can seek out friends and other relationships that don’t pull you down. Try to avoid hanging out with incessantly negative coworkers, whether to you or about the general situation
- try to find a hobby or recreational activity that you’re good at. Nothing builds up confidence like doing well at something, especially if you’re struggling at work
Ultimately, confidence is key when it comes to mental and emotional resilience. If you’re confident in your abilities, nothing will be able to keep you down for too long.
BUILD STRONG RELATIONSHIPS WITH COWORKERS/EMPLOYEES
One last tip you can use to improve your resilience is to build strong relationships with your coworkers or your employees. Humans are meant to rely on strong social networks to provide them with emotional resilience. In general, women tend to be much better at this than men, so they also tend to bounce back more quickly when they get an emotional setback or have a bad day.
But men can practice this as well. Strong relationships will give you the emotional support you need to stand strong when things get tough or when things look dire. If you don’t already have good relationships with your coworkers, try to build them by attending social events outside of work or by being friendly in the workplace.
If you’re a manager, try connecting with your fellow leaders or bonding with employees as you lead them to success. Just be careful with the latter so you can still perform your functions as an impartial leader.
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Thought leaders & celebrities share their tactics for success on the Lisnic podcast by Lisa Teh & Nick Bell