Feeling anxious? Now what?

While on a virtual meeting the other day, I was talking to a someone who is in the healthcare industry. He is also an expert in mental health, and works with many people between the ages of 18-23. During our conversation, he revealed how people in this age range are struggling with their anxiety levels right now. He also acknowledged it wasn’t simply this age range that is struggling. Unfortunately, I was not surprised by this news.

I asked what was the single reason, or most referenced concern people said was causing their anxiety. His response surprised me slightly, but it does make sense. He noted that it is the increased lack of knowing what is going to happen in their respective lives that is spiking their anxiety levels.

Right now, all of us are living at a time when the word combo of “precarious situation” could be used to describe also how we feel. In plain English, uncertainty is what is currently ruling our days.

However, like many other feelings, uncertainty can be corralled. We can also apply more control than you realize, to help us reduce our anxiety levels. For starters, doing this takes looking at our respective scenarios from a different perspective from what you are facing. The questions I want you to honestly answer are: Are you willing to do this? What is the worst thing that would happen if you don’t? Perhaps you will continue to feel more anxious? I’m certain no one wants to feel a higher level than they presently do.

As an external optimist, I believe my skill set in this area are needed more than ever right now. I also feel fortunate to be My ability to contribute helping others feel less anxious is intended to purely help others feel a reduced sense of lack of control. If I am able to simply help one person, then I am grateful for being able to do so.

When I choose the name of my first book called “Wisdom Whisperer”, I intentionally did this. Why? Because the information I am sharing with others I consider to be wisdom others can benefit from…should they decide to listen. Hence the reference to “whispering” versus overtly shouting out what I am conveying.

The good news I was referencing about being able to control or reduce our anxiety levels, is with the intent of doing so without medication.  The reality is that I am not a healthcare professional, so I cannot prescribe medication. From a science and medical perspective, there are levels of anxiety that require medication, but most people can control theirs without it. However, if you require anxiety medication and it helps you, even temporarily, consider yourself fortunate to have found a solution. Especially in the time period we are in.

For those of you who believe you do not need to seek medication as a solution, here are some ideas for you to consider exploring and trying to see if they can help you to take back control of your anxiety level. Many of these will be ones you have heard of before. Perhaps even using currently, but for those who have not had to deal with anxiety before, this list is for you. Thank you to my professional mental health connection for suggesting these solutions.

  • Think about anything other than what is contributing to your anxiety. For many of you, watching, listening or reading about Covid 19 for any length of time, every day, and for excessive periods of time is not helping you. Reduce your intake of the news reports.
  • If you live alone, please make time to talk to your friends on the phone or via a video conference. Texting is Ok, but seeing the other person or multiple people you can talk to will make you feel much better. I had my second virtual “party” on Saturday night. For a number of my friends, it was the first time they had experienced the beneficial positive feeling and power of getting together and talking this way. A number of them said it simulated better than they expected what a real party would be like.
  • Any type counts. More importantly, try to do some type that you enjoy, and that could even feel like it is fun! Dancing around counts, so crank up your favorite music and start dancing.
  • Distract yourself with learning how to do something you have always said…I have always wanted to learn how to (fill-in-the-blank).
  • Change your diet. This is a great time to manipulate how you feel by feeling better by actually making an attempt to eat more healthy food. We all know that sugar is not our friend…although I know it tastes really good. Start by trying to cut down on the amount of sugar you eat every day. It will be easier than you think. One thing I did was to eat a piece of fruit, instead of having some ice cream.
  • Do something nice for someone else. You know the expression “It is always better to give than to receive”. My neighbor just texted me and said she has an open bottle of wine she used a small amount of in a recipe. She doesn’t like red wine, so she asked if I wanted to have the rest of the bottle. This has to be the best morning offer I have received in years! Although, I won’t be enjoying the wine until dinner tonight.
  • Loan your time and teach somebody how to do a skill you have mastered. Perhaps ask someone you know to teach you what they are a pro at doing, and then ask them if you can reciprocate. Or, introduce them to someone you know who can teach them a new skill.
  • Keep in mind that your anxiety level will decrease, and that now you have some basic techniques to help you to bring it down.

Please think of this list a catalyst. One intended to serve as a reminder about how to decrease our anxiety levels. My one request? If you made it to the end of this article, please share with me or others at least one of your own techniques to reduce anxiety. Thank you in advance for doing so, and stay healthy my friends, both physically and mentally.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of Market Me Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Finder Coachauthor of Wisdom Whisperer  and Evolve! With the Wisdom Whisperer (published in December 2019)and is a well-respected motivational and social influencer with a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances. She also is the creator and Host of a TV Show and Podcast called Murf & E Unfiltered – Zero BS Biz Talk.

Essentially every team is dysfunctional in some way. Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging dysfunctional teams (sports & business), and turning them into epic ones.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

“NEW!” Guide for Teams:

Every team is dysfunctional at some point.  Click on the link below to obtain a “free guide” with (5) Proven Strategies To Turn Your Dysfunctional Team Into An Epic One

Adaptability is a superpower.

With undertones in the media and in conversations with people the last few days, it appears we are inching towards our state and perhaps our country being fully quarantined. Does this bother me? Not really, and I have a number of reasons why.

My first reason is due to the fact I see infinite possibilities with having time I did not expect to have to work on projects that even on a digital list, I felt were accumulating dust. My second reason is I also have time to catch up with people who are usually in transit, or on the other side of the world.  I now know where they are, and can get in touch with them! The third reason is I feel much more creative and full of hope about what is ahead for all of us.

Now, back to discussing being adaptable. Is this a trait that can be taught? Sure. Although some people are naturally more adaptable than others. I bet you can also name a few people who are this way. Are they people you enjoy working with or having in your life? Of course, they are. They tend to be the type of people who go with the flow. In the current state our world is in, we need to call upon more of these people to help us. Especially, to help the people who are the opposite of them.

Being flexible is one of the many words to also describe people who are adaptable. In my professional opinion and through observations, when someone is flexible, it also provides them with more opportunities.  Both professionally and personally.

A fantastic workplace example of someone who exhibited adaptability characteristics was a person I was once interviewing. We ended eventually hiring this person, but they were our second-choice candidate. The first person ended up declining our offer, and we went back to the second candidate who was thrilled to have an offer extended to him. He needed to be flexible with our terms of hiring, and he was. This made choosing him as a second-choice candidate feel like an even better decision. He also demonstrated continued flexibility as an employee, and his early signs of being this way represented him authentically.

Are there ways you can either become or be perceived to be more adaptable? Absolutely. Here are some suggestions on how to go about doing so:

  • The next time someone asks you to help them, do so, and without any excuses.
  • Give other people an opportunity to be in the spotlight at work, or put them in the spotlight by being a spokesperson for how valuable their contributions are to your team.
  • Consider doing that “task” others are always asking you to do on your team that you always avoid doing. Surprise them and show them that you aren’t “Captain No”.
  • Agree to meet in the middle. It doesn’t matter what the topic is, as long as it doesn’t get you in trouble or harm others.
  • Think about why you might not be adaptable. Is it because you are stubborn? Do you think your reputation might be tarnished or improved with being more flexible? Perhaps you are afraid to fail? Or, worse, succeed?
  • Have you always been inflexible? Is this a label you want to have applied to you?
  • Consider someone you know who would be described as being adaptable. What are the reasons others would classify them this way? Can you try modeling and applying one or more of these qualities to how you go about your life or the work you do?
  • It will take time and practice to become more flexible, just like it does when you begin to workout at the gym. It’s the same concept with personality adaptability.

Let’s face it. Superpowers are not easy to come by, and certainly not everyone can master and have this one applied when others are describing them. Maybe not all the time, but perhaps some of the time.

As I noted in the hiring example above, I have questions that I have used and asked candidates to help me determine whether adaptability is one of their traits. These same questions can be configured to apply them to people you interact with on a social basis too. If you are interested in finding out what they are, please let me know.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of Market Me Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Finder Coachauthor of Wisdom Whisperer  and Evolve! With the Wisdom Whisperer (published in December 2019)and is a well-respected motivational and social influencer with a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances. She also is the creator and Host of a TV Show and Podcast called Murf & E Unfiltered – Zero BS Biz Talk.

Essentially every team is dysfunctional in some way. Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging dysfunctional teams (sports & business), and turning them into epic ones.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

“NEW!” Guide for Teams:

Every team is dysfunctional at some point.  Click on the link below to obtain a “free guide” with (5) Proven Strategies To Turn Your Dysfunctional Team Into An Epic One

Life interrupted.

I woke up this morning feeling different. Not because it’s my birthday tomorrow, but because our world feels different. Almost like everything feels like it is in slow motion, and much of it appearing surreal. It feels unsettling, especially since so much is unknown in terms of what lies ahead. Not just tomorrow, next week or even next year, but what the effects of everything will have on our society. Although the pandemonium is coming from a known source of the Corona Virus, its blanketing impact on so many areas of people’s lives is what has me concerned.

Dealing with the unknown has never been an issue for me. In fact, I’m very comfortable with change. I embrace it, and seek it out, and not being in control of everything has never been a challenge for me. I see my ability to deal with ambiguity as a strength, as it allows me to be adaptable. It also allows me to navigate and guide others who are less comfortable with change, and the unknown.

The way I look at the unknown is to see possibilities others do not have a lens on. I wouldn’t classify myself as a futurist by any stretch of the imagination, but what I do see is that the Corona Virus is potentially giving many people a gift.

What is the gift? The gift is to slow down. Or, perhaps hit the pause button, and to re-think what our true priorities are, while being able to have the time to focus on what matters. Of course, what matters to me may be entirely different from others. That’s the point. This is OK, as it shouldn’t and doesn’t have to matter to others what each of our priorities are. I’m also acknowledging that our priorities can and do change, particularly when we are faced with pending life and health uncertainties.

I’m an optimist, and as I expressed earlier, and yes, I see the Corona Virus causing pandemonium right now. However, in my experience when this happens; from a societal perspective, it can also be a catalyst to bring our divisive society together.

From my perspective, and to be clear, I’m referring to the global divisiveness we have been experiencing, but seen more closely to home in my own country of the United States. Although for the last decade it appears my country’s name suggests just the opposite of what I have been witnessing. My hope is that the Corona Virus may in fact help to bring us back together. To actually unite us again, and to unite us with the rest of the world in coming together while we are collectively working to figure out our “go forward” plan in the midst of the chaos that’s ensuing.

Although we have only been dealing with the Corona Virus for a relatively short period of time in the US, and our news sources could be characterized as providing mixed messaging on what we should collectively be doing, I’m personally going to focus on what I can positively have an impact on. Both for the benefit of me, my family, friends and people in my social and business network.

During this time of uncertainty, and if you are curious, below is what I will personally be doing to have an impact to help in my own way in the next few weeks or months:

  • Focusing intently on my family and making sure they remain healthy
  • Reaching out to friends and checking in on them to see what needs they have that I can help with
  • Leveraging social media to keep in touch responsibly with those I will not be able to interact with that are in the high-risk health category
  • Harnessing the power of the internet to be able to reach more people with my Wisdom Whisperer brand. Yes, this could appear to be self-serving, but my work is intended to be focused on helping and virtually mentoring others. For those of you who do not know this, I have a variety of channels I leverage to do this. They include writing (weekly blogging via MarketMeToo.net and MarketMeToo.blog, two books I have published – Wisdom Whisperer and Evolve! With the Wisdom Whisperer), speaking at conferences and to students, broadcasting (e.g., via my show called “Murf & E Unfiltered – Zero BS Biz Talk” found on my YouTube Channel found by searching for Murf & E Unfiltered), and through workshops and speaking engagements. I don’t normally share this, but I am also a trusted advisor to numerous executives and highly influential people in multiple industries around the globe, who regularly rely upon my advice and guidance.
  • Continuing to do pro-bono Gallup StrengthsFinder Coaching work
  • Mentoring people, some of which I have been mentoring for over 20 years
  • Keeping my eyes open for opportunities to help others I do not know, but that I can potentially help in some way with my professional talents.

My birthday gift to you:

  • Starting today, on St Patrick’s Day, I will be providing people with access to my calendar on Tuesday’s for the next two months through May 17, 2020 (for free, and for 15 minutes) to have me listen to them, or to give them advice on both work and life topics they do not have a solution to. Here is a link to my on-line calendar: https://calendly.com/kathymurphy

As we move forward in the coming weeks, please do you part to remain healthy, and help others if and when you can. One more thing. Please try your best to be optimistic about the outcome of what you are experiencing, or going to experience in the coming months. Everyone will benefit from your optimism, even if you have to work really hard at seeing the “glass half full” in the scenarios you will be facing. In my case, the gift I am getting from the Corona Virus this weekend, is that I’ll be with all three of our kids who normally live elsewhere, yet will be home with me instead to celebrate my birthday. Being together is the best gift ever!

Be well everyone, and I look forward to engaging with you soon, and of course only “virtually” at this point in time.

 

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of Market Me Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Finder Coachauthor of Wisdom Whisperer  and Evolve! With the Wisdom Whisperer (published in December 2019)and is a well-respected motivational and social influencer with a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances. She also is the creator and Host of a TV Show and Podcast called Murf & E Unfiltered – Zero BS Biz Talk.

Essentially every team is dysfunctional in some way. Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging dysfunctional teams (sports & business), and turning them into epic ones.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

“NEW!” Guide for Teams:

Every team is dysfunctional at some point.  Click on the link below to obtain a “free guide” with (5) Proven Strategies To Turn Your Dysfunctional Team Into An Epic One

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Your perspective. How it can change for the better, and quickly.

Anyone who knows me well, knows I’m an optimist, and sharing a world with others who let’s say are not always as positive. Is this challenging for me? Sometimes it is, and in fact I do need to avoid people whose personality favors being negative. They draw down my positive energy, and no one needs others to deplete their energy.

Due to the fact my perspective favors a sunny outlook, even during times when you wouldn’t expect this, I tend to look at the world via a different lens than most. One of my favorite things to do is to help others, see what I see. Doing this provides me with the opportunity to verbally and sometimes visually paint a different perspective for the person I am speaking with.

Generally, after I have helped someone to change their perspective, I’m always amazed at their reaction. So much so, that there have been times I wanted to video what they were telling me. There was one time in particular when I was in the process of helping to change someone’s perspective. The conversation involved a parent relating to a young person on their son’s sports team that I was working with. I was working with the entire team and the coaching staff too.

According to the parent I was speaking with, her perception of the young man I was discussing was vastly different than the perspective she and other parents had. The parent was commenting on some of this young man’s choices, and only had a one-dimensional perspective of who he was. They saw him as a troublemaker. I saw him very differently, and so did his teammates and head coach. The young men on this person’s team thought very highly of him, and of his lacrosse skills. He had high emotional intelligence, was funny and possessed a great deal of energy. Yes, sometimes his energy got him into trouble when it wasn’t constructively guided.

When I was describing the positive attributes of this young man to the parent who didn’t know him, but who had heard stories about him, they were shocked at what I was telling them. What did I tell this parent? I told them this young man had incredible potential as both a person and athlete, and if he was well guided, had a shot at playing lacrosse on a college team.  Can you picture the look of someone staring at you in disbelief? This is what I was looking at.

The best part was that the parent told me they had not heard anything positive about the young man. However, based on what I was sharing with them about him, they admitted could now figure out why their son liked him. They apologized to me for thinking this young man was a troublemaker, and not a good teammate. The best part of this conversation occurred next. It was when this person said they were going to be a public relations champion for this young man. What were they going to do? They were going to talk to and tell the other parents on the team about what they had heard from me.  Hearing this made my heart melt, and I had to hold back tears when I heard this.

It’s conversations like this one that make helping others change or alter their perspective for the better, and quickly that makes me know there is hope for those who you can’t imagine their perspective changing.

So, can you help others like I do to change their perspective? Yes, and here are some tips on how to do so.

  • Ask the person if they would consider changing their perspective. Chances are no one has asked them to do so.
  • Get the person to explain why they think the way they do. Often, they do not realize their thinking has been manipulated by others, and they found it easier to go along with what I call “group thinking” versus independent thinking.
  • If the person’s perspective is negative, or can hurt others emotionally, ask them if this is their intention?
  • If the person you are speaking with is open to changing their perspective, thank them for being open to doing so. It’s not always easy for people to do this, but when they change their mind and perspective in a positive way, everyone wins.

Granted not everyone will be open to changing their perspectives. However, it will be worth the effort of trying to get them to do so. Especially when the outcome can continue to help, as illustrated in my example above. Don’t give up if your first attempt doesn’t go the way you want it to. If you are passionate about changing someone’s perspective, it will be worth pursuing making this happen.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of Market Me Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Finder Coachauthor of Wisdom Whisperer  and Evolve! With the Wisdom Whisperer (published in December 2019)and is a well-respected motivational and social influencer with a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances. She also is the creator and Host of a TV Show and Podcast called Murf & E Unfiltered – Zero BS Biz Talk.

Essentially every team is dysfunctional in some way. Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging dysfunctional teams (sports & business), and turning them into epic ones.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

“NEW!” Guide for Teams:

Every team is dysfunctional at some point.  Click on the link below to obtain a “free guide” with (5) Proven Strategies To Turn Your Dysfunctional Team Into An Epic One

 

 

 

Who can you ask?

I’m a realist, and if you haven’t noticed, I write and talk about a variety of topics which others might not talk about, and perhaps ones you would rather avoid thinking about, or postpone for as long as possible. My perspective is that someone has to have their “big girl pants” on. This means covering subjects which are the equivalent of vegetables when you are a kid, versus the candy you might have preferred.

Have you learned it is better to face tough topics head on, than to run away from them? If not, I can tell you it is.  Yes, it is not easy to do this, but it beats the alternative of continuous avoidance. Are you guilty of this, or do you know someone who is? Where does that get you or them? Not far.

Although it might not have happened to you yet, there will come a time in your career when you are going to have to seek out a person who is going to be able to play the role of a trusted advisor. You might not have considered the need for this person to be in your life, but I highly encourage you to begin looking for and identifying them. Why? Because this person will be the life raft you will need to get you through a very difficult professional situation, or help you to navigate a decision which could alter the course of your career.

Do you have someone in mind who could play this role? If not, would you know how to go about determining who this person should be? Potentially it might be two people, but often it is one individual.

Let’s think about some of the characteristics we would want someone to have who is going to be our trusted advisor.

  • The no brainer part is they need to be trust worthy.
  • They need to have a proven record of being there for you when it really mattered. A parent or guardian often plays this role, but this person is someone in your professional sphere.
  • You should also have will have cultivated a relationship with them, and perhaps they already played an advisory role for you at some point.

Additional criterion for selecting your trusted advisor is:

  • Having excellent judgement, and a solid record of having made good decisions.
  • Being strategic, and having the ability to see the big picture, especially when it is critical for them to do so.
  • They are able to clearly communicate options for you to consider.
  • They need to be both supportive and realistic.
  • Understanding you well, and how you professionally operate will be helpful, as they will have better insight into the ramifications of your decision or scenario options.
  • Being ethically minded.
  • Operating from a place of looking out for your best interests.
  • Taking a long-range approach to decision making, versus a short-term gain.
  • Having experience with potentially the situation you are in is a bonus, as they will have clearer insight into how the outcome of your scenario could play out.

I remember hearing from one of the CEO’s I worked for about how he thought he had identified a group of trusted advisors. He found out he was wrong. In fact, he only had one. However, one was all he needed. His take away from this experience at first was shocking, and it occurred when the Board of Directors fired him. When he sought out advice from the people he thought were his trusted advisors about what his go forward plan should be, he had severely underestimated who he could count on.

How was this CEO so blind or caught off guard when he sought the advice he needed? Some of the reasons have to do with the criteria above not being factored in early enough, and prior to needing the trusted advisor to be in place.

Preparing to have your trusted advisor can also be compared to having a life insurance policy. No one really wants to have one, but it is the responsible thing to do, and you will not regret having one in place. You will regret not having your trusted advisor in place when you find yourself in need to consult with them. Don’t get caught off guard like the CEO I referenced.

Right now, you have the time now to invest in finding your trusted advisor. You will not regret having them in place when that day comes along when you will need to enlist their support.  I guarantee you this, and as we know, there are not many guarantees issued in life or business.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of Market Me Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Finder Coachauthor of Wisdom Whisperer  and Evolve! With the Wisdom Whisperer (published in December 2019)and is a well-respected motivational and social influencer with a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances. She also is the creator and Host of a TV Show and Podcast called Murf & E Unfiltered – Zero BS Biz Talk.

Essentially every team is dysfunctional in some way. Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging dysfunctional teams (sports & business), and turning them into epic ones.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

“NEW!” Guide for Teams:

Every team is dysfunctional at some point.  Click on the link below to obtain a “free guide” with (5) Proven Strategies To Turn Your Dysfunctional Team Into An Epic One