Finding Strength to Work When Unwanted News Shows Up

Have you been happily moving through life when horrible news appears?  Perhaps you take time off from work, but you eventually have to go back, don’t you?  How can you manage a personal loss, but do your work? How?

I unfortunately, had some horrible news show up in my life recently.  How, I wondered, can I carry on, do my work and grieve? How can I have human emotions, be a mom to a little toddler, a wife and work?  

First, if you can take time off.  Allow yourself to feel the deep human emotions that are coming up involving your unwanted news.  If you can not take off, do your best at work and know that you have acquired the skill set needed to assist you at this time.  Your work experience will carry you and remain confident that you will be be able to get through this difficult moment with grace.  For me, work was a moment to pause my grief/pain/sadness. Once work is over, go home or to your comfortable safe place and allow yourself time to process what has happened.  In order for you to move forward, it is necessary to feel your emotions fully.  Let them express in you how they want to. Stuffing them away only temporarily suppress them.

Each day you will get stronger.  Now is the time to focus on self-care and compassion. Remain healthy in your eating and sleeping habits, perhaps start a new book that elicits feelings of happiness, make a playlist of uplifting music so when you feel anxiety strike, you will bring a joyful beat into your heart, keep exercising or begin with outdoor walks. Now is not the time to slip away to the dark side, but rather be your best friend who is there to lift you up. Breathe. Breathe. Breathe and ask for help.  Friends and family will gladly assist you in your recovery after trauma/grief/sadness.

I write this from first hand experience.  I have had shocking and dreadful news twice in five months.  I wondered how I could I make it?  However, gratitude and appreciation for a life dominant with joy helped me greatly.  I took it day by day.  I remembered the past was gone and the future has yet to come. Here is where I found strength.  A strangers smile, my son’s laugh, a supportive friend bringing me food, a good cry, a new inspiring book to read before bedtime, no news, a long shower with essential oils, a hard cry, and practicing gratitude showed me the light of a new day and the clouds began to slowly, slowly lift.   You can not control what is happening, but you can control how you respond. This is where your power lays.

 

Self-Care & the Workplace

How do you feel at work?  Are you tired and exhausted regularly?  Do you feel like you are in a dry routine without any enjoyment or minimal pleasure?  Do you often describe your energy level as drained?  Perhaps it is time to look into some self-care.

  1. Exhaustion.  This is something that I have battled with.  I even went as far as going to the doctor to check my iron because I knew something was wrong.  Turns out, I needed to simply SLEEP.  Imagine that?  Try going to sleep earlier.  I know I need about 7.5-8 hours of sleep to function the best.  Figure out your sweet spot and adjust.
  2.  Put your favorite affirmation on your screensaver.  If not that, put something on your desk that reminds you of joy and happiness.  Perhaps a picture of a loved one (or animal), a picture of a dream destination.  Anything that reminds you there is more to life than work.
  3.  Remember that your purpose in life is “LOVE” .  Your occupation is your choice. You are not your job.  It is what you do.  What happens at your job is an experience in your life.  It is not your life.
  4.  Lunchtime.  Make sure you eat healthy, balanced food and take a break to eat.  Even if you stay at work, get away from your work desk, stop and eat calmly.  Eating well will nourish the brain and body.
  5.  Take a break away from the office.  I would eat in the office break room, but would take a walk after for 10-20 minutes.  If you can, get outside. Perhaps a 10 minute break/meditation of sitting still outside?  It really helps to change the scenery.  Yes, even standing outside of the office on a busy street can clear your mind.
  6.  Rushing.  Don’t do it!  Get up 10 minutes early and arrive a bit early.  Added bonus is that it gives you a few minutes to socialize before ‘the doors open’.  Rushing causes stress.  When you feel calm you can adjust to work easily leading to a more productive day.
  7.  Leaving on time!  I know this can be the greatest challenge.  There will always be more to do.  Always.  Remember that it has been proven time and time again that leaving on time leads to better rest, less stress and in the end better work productivity the next day.  If you want to be more focused, you must leave work and take a mental and physical break.  I will repeat, it is not your life.
  8.  Fun!  Yes, you can and must have fun outside of work.  Again, your work is what you do by choice and it is not the master of your life.  You are in control.  Joyful living is one of the greatest emotions which leads to one of the most powerful life boosters: Appreciation.