“What happened to you?!”

http://www.dreamstime.com/-image2794971Don, my friend looked over at his racquetball partner who was covered on his back, chest, and arms with horrific scars and asked that question. His partner, Roger, a Vietnam vet who received the Purple Heart for his injuries, stared coldly into Don’s eyes and responded, “Racquetball!”

The ultimate psyche out! I would never set foot on the court with that guy.

Whether it is a heavy workload our boss gives us, too many things to do and too little time to do them, a feeling that we don’t have the skills to accomplish what we need to, or personal troubles and losses, everyone feels overwhelmed from time to time.

What do we do when we are “psyched out” and feeling overwhelmed? Here are some things that will help.

  • You are not alone. Realize that everyone experiences these feelings from time to time.
  • You can make it through. Resilience is not something that some people have and others don’t have. You can learn resilience.
  • Connect. The support of friends, family, and coworkers will help.
  • Control your feelings and responses. Feelings happen, but how we respond to them is our responsibility. Take control of the negative feelings and calm your heart and spirit.
  • Imagine. Keep the goal of accomplishing the task or surviving the issue in front of you and “see it.”
  • Make plans and carry them out. Goal-setting is the #1 thing anyone can do accomplish at task. Use goal-setting for your advantage.
  • Be confident. Believing that you can accomplish a task (called “self-efficacy”) is another one of the most important things you can do to succeed in any undertaking. Basically, if you believe you can, you will; if you don’t believe you can, you won’t.

The next time you are psyched out, keep these things in mind- they should help you through. And…stay off the court with Roger.

4 thoughts on ““What happened to you?!”

  1. Taylor

    Mike, I especially like your points that (1) connect with others, (2) control your responses, and (3) make plans and carry them out. Telling friends how I am feeling often provides healthy perspective on whatever the situation may be. Responding with a plan of action, rather than becoming paralyzed by a situation, helps “steady the ship” when I am overwhelmed. Thanks for the good advice.


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