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When fear sets in, we stop being gracious! And then it all goes wrong.

“Worry is like a rocking chair: it keeps you busy but it never gets you anywhere.” - Joyce Meyer

Experience has shown me that worry takes us somewhere but it’s not where we’d like to go. A few weeks ago, I took the lead on a new project. It had been delayed but we still had to deliver within the next two months. No one believed we could. But despite everything, we succeeded, thanks to the effort of the whole team pulling together and micro-management of what was required.

I began this project by chance. I devoted all my energy to it and spent many more hours than planned to ensure that it was a success. As I was juggling two other projects at the same time, I could not get rid of this feeling that I was not good enough. I was worrying about not being able to meet my obligations.

Next, what was likely to happen did indeed happen. I found myself completely stressed out and, during meetings, harassing everyone to keep to the scheduled time. As a result, I had to say sorry to and get things back on track with my colleagues. Not what you’d call effective.

Of course, one might say that I should have been better organised. That’s true. I am usually very good at this – it is one of my core strengths. But this time, I simply lost control.

What happened? I let fear set in. Fear made me think that I had to get everything done ‘by yesterday’, that I had to avoid ‘wasting time’ with my colleagues.

Fear stalled me in the very short term. I had to work hours on end to meet the expectations of my three clients.

Moreover, because I was working 12 to 14 hours per day, I let all my healthy habits slide – workout, reading, rest, nutrition – everything went out the window. In contrast, my stress and dissatisfaction levels skyrocketed.

Fortunately, this episode in which I lost all sense of grace was a wake-up call, and I subsequently got my act together. May it serve as a lesson to me.

What about you ? Do you have similar or different experiences? Let me know, I'll be happy to discuss it with you!

Artwork : Mélanie Bénard Tremblay, 2019, © Marakoudja.

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