Survival Strategies – Sink or Swim ?


We have our survival strategies to face when the going gets tough. A calm mind is what you achieve during the early morning yoga session or at a holiday. How do you extend this experience and keep a watch on your actions as the day gets hectic? There are zillion reasons that barely allow you to catch a breath, rather makes you race against time with strict deadlines and increasing competition. How do you hold yourself and sail through such times?
Success comes to you when you learn to master them.  We know how you rush from your Monday mornings with weekly review meetings followed by a team hurdle to make the entire team realize their errors, just to jump into a conference call with the Asia Pacific level team to battle out the specification for errors.  Let’s take each area and see how they formulate your agility.

Cutting Corners

  • Discover the driving forces: the meeting with the high priority on your calendar sets your heart pacing up. The minutes of the meeting races you through the tasks you had to complete and gives you the updates. What is your driving force in this activity? Are you driven by the fact that you need to have answers, before your next meeting? Alternatively, you feel strengthened that you have the view of the resolution, and you know how it is in action right now? The fact that it drives you builds your intelligence over a period of time. The former one discussed here is out of fear, whereas the latter stems from strength.
  • Incremental maturity with the marginal increase of hostility: You are back from the head quarters with a ‘make or break’ address for your team. There are several burning issues for you to deal with such as the differences between the managers, the increasing defects in the process matched perfectly with attrition post appraisal season. It boils down to the fact that you do it before you go! What would be your best message to your team? Sharing every incident as it is and implements a plan of action with metrics? Alternatively, you decide to drill every problem, map them to a different area and allocate responsibilities with complete ownership. This allows your team to avoid being overwhelmed and handle each slice effectively. Let’s remember, the shrinking pool of expertise limits hands at work. How would you allocate responsibilities in this situation? Few of your old leaders who know how to handle have their hands full. Learning it, while delivering in the office and making mistakes on the go will bring in duplication of tasks. Consequently, would run you out of your time. So you call for action on war footing and close the tasks by the deadline. Do remember, that once you have handled this, you cannot pace down the activities. There are many more such challenges waiting ahead for you. You choose to build your capabilities, as you mature while dealing with them.
Survival Strategies
Few days back, I wrote about introspection, in How good are we. and here are some thoughts as shared by our reader Umesh.G. Chavan.
I share some thoughts, which have helped me tremendously throughout the tough times.
  1. Your subconscious controls all the vital processes of your body and knows the answer to every problem.
  2. Before going off to sleep, turn over a specific request to the subconscious mind and believe the miracle is working out, adding power to you.
  3. Whatever you impress on your subconscious is expressed on the screen of space as conditions experiences, and events. Therefore, carefully watch ideas and thoughts entertained in your mind.
  4. Your thought is an action, and the reaction is an automatic response of your subconscious mind to your thought. Watch your thoughts!
  5. All frustration is due to the unfulfilled desires. If you dwell on the obstacles, delays, and difficulties your subconscious mind will respond accordingly and you are blocking your own good.
  6. The life principle will flow through you rhythmically and harmoniously if you consciously affirm: “I believe that the subconscious power which gave me this desire is now fulfilling it through me”. This dissolves all conflicts.
  7. You can interfere with normal rhythm of your heart, lungs, & other organs by worry anxiety & fear. Feed your subconscious with thoughts of harmony, health, & peace, & all the functions of your body will become normal again.
  8. Keep your conscious mind busy with expectations of the best, & your subconscious will faithfully reproduce your habitual thinking.
  9. Imagine a happy ending or solution to your problem, feel the thrill of accomplishment & what you imagine & feel will be accepted by your subconscious mind & bring it to pass.
I have realized tough times don’t last tough people do.

In addition to what he had shared, these are some random thoughts that have worked for me.
  • No matter how difficult it may seem. The stress is cyclic. Just as it crests, it will subside.
  • I acknowledge all my human feelings, including fear, insecurity, anger, hatred. Once I acknowledge them and let them be for a while, it subsides on its own. This strengthens me to look beyond them and find the wisdom in it.
  • When a task is allocated to me, and it looks unachievable, I say it to myself that, it has already been delivered by someone on this earth. It’s just a matter of knowhow, figuring out what will work and get my hands on it.
  • No matter how big an escalation is, there is always a solution.
  • I don’t know, what I don’t want until, and, unless I lose it. The moment it is taken away from me, strangely, it brings in a unique happiness. This joy announces how much I never wanted it!
  • Certain things that I am dying to achieve at this moment, no sooner would cease to be, of any importance to me. If I am supposed to negotiate for it, all I need to understand is how long would I need it, and if I am ready to hold myself for it until that time.
  • Jumping the gun is the easiest but not the safest option for me. I prefer to keep a neutral point of view, until I fully develop an understanding. It is far better than being proven vehemently wrong and winning few enemies.
  • There are situations, where I can offer no solution, to someone who is asking me for it. I choose to listen intently and pass the message. There is someone who would know how to solve it. It’s just a matter of connecting the two.
Tell us what are your strategies?  We would want to know, how have they been working for you? How does hostility and tough time contribute to your agility?

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