Frustrating isn’t it? You are flying along, everything is going fine and then, wham! Something happens that just knocks your world sideways. It might be your top technician just handed in their notice. It may be a change in industry legislation that is really going to impact how you work. Perhaps your boiler burst or your washing machine broke, the dog is sick or your kids are driving you nuts (trust me from 0-21years and beyond this never changes). Whatever is it you could certainly do without it and anyway why do these things always seem to happen to you?

Life happens and it’s easy to think that it only happens to us but in fact life happens to everyone. Simple -but no less frustrating or in fact agonising I hear you scream! Well, no however let’s consider what can be done about it.

Firstly allow yourself a little time to react, you will find some useful tips on managing your own and other peoples reaction in times of stress here:( Secondly imagine standing in the very centre with all the bits and pieces that make up your challenges. Spread these out in front of you we are going to organise them out of the chaos in which they currently exist.

Firstly, and most importantly work out which bits you have absolute control over. You don’t need anyones permission, help or collaboration to do something with this. Let’s call this the Inner Circle. Secondly, think about the things that you have a fair amount of control over, perhaps you need another person involved, a client, a supplier, your partner but you have some degree of say in what happens next. We will call this Middle Ground. Finally consider what is totally out of your control e.g industry regulations. No matter what you do from your current position you have absolutely no say on what happens. Let’s call this Out There.

Im going to give you three energy beans. They contain your time, effort, thinking, discussions, emotions and energy and you can spend them how ever you like. Now that your challenge is arranged into these three groupings it could be argued that you could spend an energy bean on each, divide them evenly. But look again, compare the Inner Circle and Out There and consider where your energy beans have most value?

Now that we are thinking about and talking about the right stuff think a little harder. Before you go rushing in to replace, fix or sort the thing look at the bigger long term picture. Hold this pesky thing up against your master plan and ask yourself if it may have just done you a favour? perhaps not but its worth pausing just for a moment to consider if the universe was just trying to lend us a helping hand to reach a bigger decision – it often does.