1. Be a good example
First, examine your own behaviour. Are you walking the positive talk or are you mumbling beneath your breath, “Not another Monday.” It is important to listen to your own language. Do you frame things in the positive, or do you often start your sentences with “No.” Do you say “Yes, but…” a lot, negating the first half of your sentence with your last? Work on becoming a positive role model in your team.
2. Speak positively internally and externally
Often our internal chatter is negative. Re-program your own chatter and then listen carefully for signs of it in others. Our bodies respond to our self-talk, if we tell ourselves we are disorganised, we behave just that way. Tell yourself, with conviction, you are an organised person, and the behaviour will begin to change. Our brain responds literally, like our computers. Learn to replace negative programming with positive.
3. Avoid negative water-cooler talk
Avoid the temptation to participate in conversations that promote a toxic workplace environment. It is very easy to commiserate with a colleague who has had a bad day or to make disparaging remarks about a difficult client, but in offices, this type of negativity is often contagious. Stop it at the source. Try and ignore it or seek an opportunity to debrief in a more constructive manner with a colleague or supervisor.
4. Teach people the art of teamwork
In our competitive society, we have a win/lose mentality. This may be a good strategy in competitive sports, not a good way to perform in the workplace. Help people to understand that thinking of winning as a team opens up the possibility for new solutions and more effective ways of doing things.
5. Avoid the drama
Melodrama is something you don’t need in your team. It saps valuable creative energy and has people running in all directions based on subjective and emotive statements to resolve or act on a perceived ‘issue’ or ‘crises’. Instead, remain calm, try and identify the facts and respond accordingly if required. Otherwise, try and avoid or contain these behaviours with the assistance of other colleagues and your supervisor.
6. Learn resilience techniques
Make sure you understand the role you play in controlling your own stress. We don’t have control over our circumstances. We do have control of how we perceive them. Take a deep breath, count to ten, walk away (physically or mentally) when you have to, and learn good stress management skills for maintaining your own resilience levels.
7. Live in the present
Dwell on the past only long enough to figure out what you want to learn from it, and then move on. What is important is what is going on right now. Give your fullest attention to exactly what you are doing now. Do it well, do it right and enjoy it.
8. Smile often
When you use the smiling muscles in your face, you activate the “happy” brain chemicals that help you feel good. You can’t be unhappy when you are smiling, and smiles are contagious. So, smile.