“I Don’t WANT To Help Anybody Today!”

Sometimes it feels like we as human beings on this planet cannot agree on ANYTHING, but if there’s one thing that we CAN agree on with utter and absolute certainty, it’s that…..we are all human.

That pretty much lowers the bar, doesn’t it? Well, it’s true, and as a result, we have good days, we have bad days, and we have absolutely HORRIBLE days.

But if you’re employed in a role through which you work with and provide essential services to other human beings each and every day, what do you do on those rare occasions when you wake up and say: “I don’t WANT to help anybody today”?

It’s happened to me—it’s happened to almost all of us. So how do we get over that nasty hump and carry on, despite the occasional really, really bad mood? Here are a few ideas….

  1. Give yourself permission to take a break. Step away from the phone, the computer, or the front desk a little more on those days. You know they don’t come very often, and most likely, tomorrow, you’ll be back to your good old cheery self. So on the days when things AREN’T working, do what you can to take yourself out of the line of fire.

Granted, some of us are truly stuck. But if you have a little leeway in determining your daily agenda, step away from the more intensive face-to-face tasks and focus on other projects. For example, there’s always—(yuck)—filing to do. But it can be the perfect task for your dark days. Sometimes fighting through these kinds of moods can truly be agonizing—so if you have an escape hatch, use it!

  1. Focus on the “easy ones.” If you have a variety of individuals to deal with and you get to call the shots, move the easiest ones to the top of the list. Not only does that take a little less pressure off, interacting with the folks who are actually easy and fun to work with can do wonders to brighten an otherwise dark and cloudy day.

If you’re that rare bird who’s disciplined enough to bite off your most difficult tasks every day right off the top, more power to you! Don’t change that—but remember that you’re not Superman, Wonder Woman, or even Clark Kent, and on some days, it can be a good idea to pick those low-hanging apples first.  You’re allowed.

  1. Give yourself some “me time” at home. A lot of the time, a bad mood can be a direct result of life out of balance—getting stuck in a rut of “doing everything for everybody,” and leaving your own needs out in the cold.

Life is a balancing act, as I’m sure you all know. But that said, way too many professionals are way too reluctant to make the necessary adjustments when that balance is off. And just like ignoring the wheels on your car, neglecting your life can result in a bumpy ride….and worse yet, one that leaves you vulnerable to the occasional breakdown.

Find some time, in the midst of all those obligations to friends, family, kids and parents, to make sure you keep your own well-being tuned up and running smoothly, and you’ll be a lot more likely to make those occasional “dark days” more and more of a rare occurrence.

Grow Big or Go Home!