I love what I do for a living. Really and truly love it. I have found a field that suits my personality and talents. I’m blessed and lucky and happy and fulfilled.
But, at times, I am confronted with a high-pressure situation, an unhappy attendee or coworker, or an otherwise stressful occurrence. Meeting planning is like that. It is a deceptively high profile job. You think you’re working behind the scenes, but all you do is work on the ‘scene’ so everything in your seemingly hidden world directly affects something very visible. Your work has a major impact on the experience of many people – sometimes thousands of people. So, how does one cope with the stress that can put on you?
Here are some tips that help me remain calm in high-pressure situations.
- Remember that I love what I do, and the current situation is temporary.
- Figure out the source of the pressure/stress – is it internal or external?
- Determine what can be done to alleviate the pressure – there is usually a “pain point” that can be remedied.
- Take steps toward that solution.
- Evaluate what led up to the stressful situation, so that it can be avoided in the future.
That’s it. No, really, that’s it. That’s all I do when faced with a high-pressure situation. Evaluate, assess, act, review. But, mostly, it’s about keeping my cool. It’s hard to see things clearly if you get caught up in emotions or reactions when the pressure’s on.