As a small business owner and also someone who works with high school seniors, I know that challenges are a part of life. As a photographer, I run into challenges whether it’s location changes, lengthy editing sessions, or trying to juggle being a mother and wife along with a professional…they pop up from time to time, even though I adore my job. I’ve discovered some great strategies to dealing with problems in a constructive way, and I wanted to share them with you. Especially as we head into a new year, it’s great to have some tools in your arsenal to deal with any challenges that may arise.
-Keep perspective: Decide if a problem is worth getting upset over. Often, I realize that something that seems huge at the time may actually not be that big of a deal. One good way to figure this out is to sleep on a big decision or problem, in order to calm down and figure out what is needed to solve it. Trying to solve something stressful when you are hungry, tired, or grumpy is never a good idea, and can cause your perspective to be super skewed and out of bounds!
-Try some calming techniques before you tackle a problem: Deep breathing, essential oils, and positive mantras are just some of the ways you can calm yourself down before dealing with a difficult person or situation. Take a few deep breaths with an essential oil like Stress Away, in order to help increase your calmness. Also remember to schedule a hard meeting or phone call in a time in your day when you can focus and be well rested!
-Remember that facts and emotions are sometimes different: I know when I am facing an obstacle, sometimes my emotions get the best of me and I forget the facts of the situation. Facts like what actually occurred, or what needs to happen next. Some good questions to ask yourself are, “What is making me upset in this situation”, “What do I need this person or business to do about it”, and “What needs to occur next”. Sometimes, you may realize your frustration is directed at the wrong person or place, and that perhaps they cannot do anything to fix it. If you are struggling to know what to do, try writing out a list of the main points to keep yourself focused.
-Bring in a third party if you are stuck: If you’re a teen struggling with a teacher or friends, bringing in another objective adult like a parent or family friend can help bring some help to a situation that you may need a fresh opinion on. It can also help to ask advice from someone who is not affiliated with any of the “sides” of the issue or situation, because they often can come up with solutions you may not have thought of. If you are a teen dealing with a company or organization, it can be helpful to bring in your spouse or parent to assist you if you feel you are not being taken seriously.
-Resolve to move on if things cannot be resolved: Sometimes a relationship or problem simply cannot be solved in a way where both parties feel satisfied. I have found it’s good to let it go and move on, without letting it fester or become a bitter sticking point for me. If I have done everything in my power to be reasonable and try to solve the problem, sometimes it is necessary to let it go, if at all possible, so I can maintain positivity and happiness in my own life!