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8 Practical Ways Business Leaders Can Conquer Stress

Want to reduce stress and anxiety? Improving your health and well-being is integral to being a great leader.

Sometimes, fear and anxiety can overwhelm us. Being a leader requires us to lead people in a way that produces desirable outcomes and ultimately a thriving and profitable business. This can sometimes be scary and stressful. Here are eight tips to reduce stress and anxiety and become a more effective boss.


1. Know your priorities.

In a 1954 speech, former U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower said: “I have two kinds of problems: the urgent and the important. The urgent are not important, and the important are never urgent.” What has become known as the “Eisenhower Principle” is said to be how he organized his workload and priorities to be effective as well as efficient. Simply put, he understood his priorities and you should too.

Instead of being aimless, knowing where to focus can save you a lot of time and stress. There’s nothing worse than spending time on projects, only to find out weeks later that you’ve channeled all that energy in the wrong direction.


2. Develop a strategy.

Develop a plan on how you plan to accomplish a task. Write down the steps your team needs to complete to reach the goal. This will save you a lot of time in the long run and reduce your stress and anxiety.


3. Take action.

Once you know what you need to do, the next step is to perform the actions required to get the job done. This will help reduce the stress and anxiety of rushing at the last minute to meet a deadline.


4. Communicate clearly.

It is important that everyone on the team is on the same page. Talk with your team members daily to be sure everything is on track according to plan. Don’t assume your team knows how to carry out a project. Miscommunications are common when you’re working with a group of people. Learning how to communicate well will make projects run more smoothly and be more enjoyable.


5. Prepare for unexpected surprises.

Sometimes, things happen that might take everyone by surprise. Be flexible, and when expected things happen learn to deal with them immediately. For example, some members of the team become sick and are unable to do certain tasks. Instead of getting all stressed out, just reassign some of the tasks to other people. Being prepared for surprises is important when being a leader.


6. Stay on top of everything.

Do what you can today. Do not put things off when you can do them right away. You never know when something may come up that might need your immediate attention. Being efficient on a consistent basis can prevent future problems down the road.


7. Learn from your mistakes.

Talk to others and see how you can improve your leadership skills. If something goes wrong, get your team members to help you out. Being an effective leader takes a lot of work and practice. The key is to continuously improve and to be willing to take advice from others.


8. Don’t assume anything.

Finally, do not assume anything. Since most of our daily decisions are based on a perception of the world that might not be completely accurate, we should aim to make educated decisions. Ask questions and be aware of what is happening under your watch. If a problem comes up, then deal with it right away. Don’t assume that everything will go according to plan. Many times, it will, and often it won’t. Be agile and flexible.


Stan Popovich is the author of the popular managing fear book, “A Layman’s Guide to Managing Fear.” For more information about Stan’s book and to get some free mental health advice, please visit Stan’s website at managingfear.com


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