What are the Do’s and don’ts of Handling Stress?

Question and Answer Series with Michelle Mccullough

 

A study done by the American Psychological association found that 48% of respondents noted that they feel like their stress has increased over the last five years. With the everyday roles and responsibilities on our plates every day, it’s no wonder we’re stressed and overwhelmed.

Stress is a big problem for a lot of us today. I narrowed down how to deal with stress by compiling a simple do’s and don’t list. Today’s blog topic will best be discussed through a series of questions and answers. Let’s jump right in to the first one.

Question #1 : When you’re stressed, what’s on your Don’t List?

Michelle: Number one hopefully happens before you get stressed. Don’t Over-Schedule Yourself. Some of our stress is self Imposed, make sure you give time in your schedule for relaxation, sleep, etc.

Question #2: Some of that sounds easier said than done. What’s on your DO list to help people in stressful times?

Michelle: Focus on the present. There may be a lot of challenges in the future, but the present is all that is in our control. We need to spend more time focusing on what we can control and let the future come what may. The old adage that worry is like a rocking chair, it gives you something to do but doesn’t get you anywhere, is true. Spend your time thinking about the things in your control.

Question #3: Many of us have taxing jobs and a lot of personal responsibilities what would you recommend that we do first?

Michelle: Ask for help. The demands we have on our lives AND the worry combined are a lot so we need to not do it alone. Whether you’re a CEO or a stay at home parent we all need help with our responsibilities. So whether it’s hiring good help or trading with friends – not only does it lift a burden, but it helps us remember that we’re not alone. Community and solidarity are great antidotes to stress.

Question #4: What would be your final tip for to de-stress?

Michelle: Create a “Play List” . In my book The Make It Happen Blueprint, one of the ways we tackle the feeling of being overwhelmed is through things that bring us joy. It can be making time for a hobby, reading a good book, or even learning something new. I recommend to corporate clients and high performance individuals to make sure they do something every day that takes their mind off the stress and also helps them develop personally with things they enjoy.

What do I do if my kid is getting bullied online?

Question and Answer series with Michelle McCullough

October is National Bullying Awareness Month and with a cell phone in the hands of almost every teen, the subject of cyber bullying deserves attention and discussion.

Today I’m going to share three tips to help your kids if they are being bullied and two tips to help your kid if THEY are the bully.

This post features some frequently asked questions on cyber bullying.

Question #1:
It seems like cyber bulling cases are becoming more and more frequent. What would you say is the first step if they’re being bullied online?

Michelle: Take it offline. Don’t continue to engage in the conversation virtually. Stop the digital dialogue because you won’t be able to change their minds. Decide if you need to address it with the person or parents over the phone or in person and involve any other parties that may need to be notified. Use the three D’s to work through serious situations: Document, discuss and delete.

Question #2:
Once things are said, even if it’s deleted, it can stay with someone for a long time. Maybe even forever. How do you start to process and resolve the situation?

Michelle: It can be tempting to back go the scene and see what else has been said and get back into the conversation, that’s why it’s important to make a change. Perhaps limit social media use, if it happened on Instagram, give it break for awhile, let the “news cycle” change if you will. Fill the time with something else completely. Go to a movie, read a book but change things up.

Question #3:
What do you recommend if it continues to happen or if your child isn’t “bouncing back”?

Michelle: Don’t be afraid to get additional support. Your child may need counseling or support at school with teachers and administration. Don’t wait. The longer things go unresolved the worse they can be long term. That’s why the acting is SO important. Resolve the issue with the kid or parents, but make sure your child gets professional help if needed.

Question #4:
Now let’s turn the tables, what if you find out your kid is the bully?

Michelle: This is where we use the three Cs. Collect, Clean and Checkup.
Before you dive into the convo with your kid, make sure your facts are straight. Collect information to make sure you have a good picture of what happened.
Talk to your kid and clean it up. If they need to delete something, make sure it gets done, if they need to make amends, make sure they do it verbally or in person – not just online. Help them understand that seeing someone and having to say it to their face makes the difference.
Finally, checkup. After the events check in with your kid, with the platform used and continue to keep the conversation going.

How Can I Better Manage my Emails?

Question and Answer with Michelle Mccullough

Studies show that employees waste 17 hours a week on pointless work email. Take 17 and times it by all of your employees and that’s a hefty expense for businesses. Today’s blog will help us all better manage our email whether you work in an office or not.

Let’s start with some questions.
Question #1: Is that your actual email number? You have 62,000 unread emails?

Michelle: Yes I do have that many emails, and trust me I wish that wasn’t me. I have 7 different emails for 4 different companies that I manage every day. I’m not the person who gets my inbox to zero before being done for the day, but there are some things I do to help keep me sane, because there are many weeks I spend MORE than 17 hours a week in email.

Question #2: What would you say is the number one things professionals should do when managing their email?

Michelle: They should set a schedule for when they look at email. It shouldn’t be open all the time and notifications should be turned off. A study by Basex research shows that that if you’re in a project and you get interrupted, it takes 20 minutes to get your brain back to the point where you were. Productivity would increase if you check your emails 3 times a day. Morning when you get in, right before or right after lunch and right before you leave for the day.

Question #3: Many people get SO many emails, that only checking 3 times a day doesn’t seem like enough to sift through everything. What would your advice be for that?

Michelle: That’s why I recommend opting out of emails and there’s a great service called unroll.me that will tell you what lists you are signed up for and you can opt out on the screen with a click of a button. Cut back the junk and it makes the important stuff easier to respond to.

Question #4: How do you recommend people sift through email so they are focusing on the biggest priorities first?

Michelle: I recommend using folders. In most email clients you can set rules to send certain messages to certain folders so you can access them easily. You can also have your email client Star or bold emails from certain clients or your boss. If that’s not enough, I found out about a service called Sanebox that goes even further with rules and folders so that you can take back your email.