Monday night I was on the phone with one of my favorite clients. He all but disappeared for a few weeks and I was getting concerned.
All I would get from him were short e-mails that something was wrong.
When we finally spoke, he told me he found out his mother was diagnosed with a recurring bout of cancer.
The very next day, he and his wife got a call from the camp in Maine where his 9 year-old son was attending. His son had hit his head while diving off a dock into the water.
Emergency workers airlifted him to a hospital in Boston as they feared his neck was broken.
For the next couple of weeks my client and his wife were trying to find out if their son would be permanently paralyzed. Eventually he recovered enough for his parents to bring him home to continue recovering. Days after that, he recovered well enough for my client to bring him back to the camp. Nothing like the resilience of a 9-year-old!
Never-the-less it was a close call.
And while his past three weeks of experiences are extreme, I’ve been noticing others I’ve been working with this week to be going through some rough patches as well.
Perhaps you too?
What compounds things when you’re in your “funk” is you also lose the energy to do something about it… thereby intensifying the funk, making it even harder to break out of it.
Before we get into some ways to break downward spiral, do know the best way is to slowly reverse it. Do not try to made huge shifts quickly. Just go at a pace that works for you:
1. Take a break at the office-you will be much, much more productive when you return to your environment after clearing up your energy.
2. Go for a run/bike ride/walk-getting the blood pumping and flowing clears your head and energy quickly.
3. Play with your dog/cat-shifts your focus from what you were thinking about.
4. Ask a small child to help you laugh- kids are incredibly creative with this one. Just give them permission to let it rip!
5. Meet a friend-let them know your deal and ask for support in working through it with you. Coffee is on you!
6. Blast the tunes!-with your favorite music. Make sure it is uplifting! For many of us, this is a fast way to shift the energy.
7. Rent a comedy DVD-laughing gets your blood flowing and air moving through your lungs, thereby shifting your energy and focus.
8. Get out of the house… go someplace beautiful and out of the ordinary-the key is breaking out of what is “familiar” for you. Having a new environment forces you to have new thoughts and perspectives… and keeps you more alert on the present… not the past or future.
9. Scream as loud and for as long as you can-in private so you don’t freak people out! While doing this, change the tones and pitches of your voice as you let it rip. It is all about getting energy and air running through your body.
10. Smile for 10 minutes… straight! Can you do it? If so, it will be something to brag about. It is almost impossible to have negative energy while smiling… try it!
When you are playing a big game in your business or life, you will get knocked around a lot. Life will continue to throw at you what it will throw at you.
Just know the important thing is not that you will have less bumps in the road, rather how you manage them.
The most important way I know to do this is by keeping your emotional and physical energy at peak performance. For it is your energy that allows you to attract what you most desire in life.
That way when life throws another obstacle, you’ll be smiling.
Action Steps for the Week:
Do an “energy audit”. How are you feeling? How does it compare with the past few weeks? Go back as far as necessary until you get a read on how you are feeling right now. Is it a longer-term or shorter-term thing? Slowly ramp up your energy accordingly.
If your energy needs a jolt, pick three of the 10 Ways to Break Out of a Funk and do them… in the next 60 minutes!
Hi, my name is Stefan Doering. Since 1987, I’ve been pioneering new approaches to environmental business and sustainability. After having started one of the first green retail businesses in the country and growing it to one of the largest, I now have coached hundreds of green businesses as well as teach green entrepreneurism for various NYC programs and at Columbia University’s Center for Environmental Research and Education. I focus on three major areas:
1) Innovating powerful green business models,
2) Crafting and implementing marketing and positioning strategies for bringing green to mainstream, and
3) Creating a consistently profitable and sustainable business.