Everybody has those ‘holy crap’ moments when you’re confronted with some issue at work (or at home) when you feel like you just got sucker punched, blindsided, attacked, imposed upon or just caught off guard and the surprise causes knots in your tummy because you just don’t how to react or how to respond.
What do you do? What can you do? We all manage these situations differently and the way we do manage them will determine what the experience and results will be.
Can you take the pressure? Will you fold? Will you freak out or will you remain cool?
Pressure can cause stress, especially when not prepared. It can really put you through all kinds of misery. Many of my clients will refer to an interview when they were asked ‘a very difficult question’ and just didn’t know how to respond. You can be sitting in your office or at a meeting and someone hits you with the unexpected. You have a group of colleagues there, the spotlight is right on you and the room goes silent. It’s unsettling. It’s very awkward, sometimes embarrassing and always uncomfortable. But it commonly happens and we need to be able to understand the moment for what it is, get a grip and deal with it in the best way we can.
There is no easy ‘one size fits all’ solution. We are all different and we supervise our emotions in very different ways, so what do you do? My solution is to take a deep breath, pause, process the moment and respond. I will never say, ‘I don’t know’. At the very least, I will always offer, ‘Ill find out’ but I will do my best to improvise, offer some value, provide an effective answer and move the conversation onward.
You cannot tap dance around the question. Quite the contrary, you need to learn how to THINK ON YOUR FEET.