by In Transition Working Girl
This week has been trying and stressful; and there were several moments where I wanted to burst out crying in the office. Yes, I am going to admit it on Working Girl, I am an emotional person. There was even a point in the week when an old friend called to get an update and I just explained I couldn't talk work stuff because I was at work and I didn't want to have a break down. Let me just say this, moving and starting a new job has been beyond stressful.
This got me thinking though, how many of you have cried in the workplace? Seen a colleague cry? And how do you handle it?
Stress is my major point of weakness when it comes to wanting to burst out into tears. It may be long hours or a pending deadline that goes off track, but crying is a source of release for me. In the beginning of my Working Girl career, managing this kind of stress was so new to me that it lead to many crying sessions and more than I would care to admit. However over the last several years I have gotten better about managing this stress and have learned how awful it really is to cry in front of my colleagues and bosses. I makes me feel weak and less respected, so now I avoid it all costs.
For me, learning to manage my tears has come with time and I know there is still lots to learn when it comes to stress management. Here are several things that I do:
- Take a short 5-10 min walk
- Take a coffee or lunch break
- Do something personal (check email or Facebook) to clear my mind off of work
- Walk outside and make a phone call
- Make a to do list to map out how I am going to get everything done
- Take deep breaths
- Turn on my iPod for a little bit
One thing I learned not to do unless I have a friend working with me that I trust, is to go crying to a colleague. If my tears are about to come when I am talking to someone, I quickly end the conversation and head for a private location.
Now reversing roles, what do you do if its someone else who is shedding tears? When this happens to me, my number one thought is get them out of sight of everyone else who might be able to see that they are crying. I usually suggest we get out of the office to continue to address what is going on. Then from there I make sure they know I am there for them and this session will be between us only. If its stress I try to unburden them and see what I can do to take a load from them, otherwise I just listen and try to be a good listener-and that's all.
What are some other tips and suggestions to manage your tears in the work place?