I have been noticing a great deal of uncertainty lately in my corporate and professional clients, especially when it comes to thoughts about the economy.
Current world events, polarization, and elections will do that.
A study from 2020 by economists Nicholas Bloom and Johnathan Rodden, who are senior fellows at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research (SIEPR) shows that economic policy uncertainty commonly spikes around election times across many countries. And that uncertainty is even higher when a national election is a close race, and the electorate is especially polarized.
A colleague shared with me yesterday that, despite overachieving targets for Q3, the CEO, COO, CFO, Director of Marketing, and the entire marketing department were let go by the parent company. No, I am not talking about Twitter.
So, are you worried? Are world affairs keeping you up at night? Uncertain how you are going to continue to motivate your team? Don’t know what the next year will bring?
You know what I say to the above questions?
There is only so much you can control. Why do so many people not only survive but become millionaires during recessions?
Mindset, not listening to your negative inner voice, and taking action!
These are my areas of specialization and I work with teams all over the world in good times and in bad. Feel free to check out my bio and website.
Before I begin, let me state that this is not a discussion of Toxic Positivity. Far from it. It would be toxic if I were ignoring the challenges in our economy and in our world. That is not what I do.
What do I do? I help you realize that YOU create your reality in more ways than you can possibly imagine, and the science proves it.
When tough times loom, pulling back on your personal development work and working with your teams can affect your bottom line, dramatically.
As I said above, there is only so much that you control and when you embrace this idea, magic happens.
According to the US Bureau of Labor and Statistics negativity costs businesses up to 3 billion a year.
Ever heard of the Broaden and Build Theory, by Fredrickson (1998)? She asserts that while negative emotions narrow thought-action repertoires, positive emotions broaden these repertoires, enabling us to draw on a wide array of possible cognitions and behaviors in response to emotional stimuli.
What is the take home?
When you are stuck in your worry, your visual cortex operates differently, you become tunnel visioned to what is in front of you, and cannot see the possibilities.
Even doctors, when primed to be positive, were far more likely to come to a correct diagnosis, according to a study by Alice Isen, a Cornell University psychologist.
“Getting the candy presumably induced a positive outlook that freed up their minds to consider the possibility of a liver problem instead of zeroing in on the misleading clue of a previous diagnosis.”
What is the take home?
When you are stuck in worry, you don’t see the things
(AKA the opportunity)
that is right in front of you.
How does this affect teams?
According to an article by Stephanie Faris: “..not all workplace communication is productive and, in fact, some can be downright toxic. Negative communication can lead to issues including inefficiency, conflict, poor morale and even legal complaints.”
What is the take home?
If your team culture is such that you allow the negativity to pervade, you will become less efficient, less productive, and less profitable.
My work helps to bring teams together. In the words of one of my clients: “The challenges are still there; we just know how to handle them now.”
So, what are three things you can do immediately to get yourself in a more positive mindset?
- When you get frazzled about the world around you, make a list of the things you CAN control and take action on even one item on your list. You will be surprised how it elevates your mood.
- Begin each day with thinking about one thing that went well the day before and one thing you are looking forward to, even if it is lunch!! You see what you are focused on! Look up Frequency Illusion
- Put a smile on your face! Smiling will improve your mood which will influence the factors discussed above. Believe it or not, the idea of Fake It Till You Make It has scientific validity. As the linked article states: “This approach does not encourage lying and deceit. It encourages manipulating secondary factors to help you put in the effort and make it.”
In the end positivity is not just a mood, it is a profitability tool.
Comment below with your personal commitment to control what YOU control. Share with your colleagues that article will resonate with.
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About me: I am a professional speaker/coach with certifications in Executive Coaching, Team Coaching/Facilitation, Emotional Intelligence, and Happiness Studies. I’ve spent 20 years working with leaders to build happier and more fulfilled teams.
If you are looking for a dynamic speaker, someone to work with your team, or individual coaching, schedule an initial call with me, just click on this link!