How to beat stress in meetings
Sometimes, long meetings and the stress that comes with it just can’t be ditched. when you already feel overwhelmed from upsetting meetings at work, maybe what you need is to stop everything and start over? Here are our advice.
Being a skilled professional person comes with a special kind of pressure. You are representing not only yourself but the kind of work you deliver. This type of pressure motivates you to keep going especially because you are being evaluated based on your performance. As much as possible, staying calm and focused in difficult situations are an effective way to beat stress work days.
What causes stress in meetings?
Have you ever experienced narrowing of vision, a pounding sensation in your ears or stomach upset moments before an interview or presentation? This is familiar for everyone. Even the most skillful speakers admit that they still feel anxious before an important presentation or long discussion. It might not be completely controllable, but stress before extensive meetings can be lessened. Unease usually pipes up if you come unprepared; surged by insufficient rest — losing of focus, mistakes and uncontrollable anger are the worse possible effects. Make sure you keep yourself pampered before your big day. Forget the bar nights. You can celebrate later, after your success.
How to take action
The most important thing that you can do when you are in a stressful meeting is to excuse yourself. Don’t let your opposite stop you for that. Getting a fresh air or transferring to another room can help reset the momentum and relieve the stress caused by arguments. By dealing with this as soon as you stress start, your team and yourself will be more effective. Remember that the very purpose of your meeting is to generate solutions.
While regaining control
The simple act of heading to the restroom will make you feel much better. While regaining control, try to do random things and keep the issues out of your head for a moment. Try to engage in funny conversations with your colleagues. As soon as your confidence spikes back, you can set yourself to start over with few, much gentler words.
Rejoining the meeting
Smile. Open up an atypical topic that can draw interesting conversation to reset the stress from the room. When you get back to the previous discussion, for sure your team will be more willing to resolve it wholeheartedly rather than argue again. Practice these few simple lines the next time you catch yourself in a stressful meeting:
- I was surprised to hear you say ________. Could you explain further?
- Is there a way we can work together to resolve this?
- Can you help me understand why it creates difficulty for you?
- Let’s try to think of ways to meet both ends.
Some ideas of things you can prepare to lessen the stress caused by long meetings
Have a vision of the meeting space
If possible, try to organize a meeting in a comfortable, spacious and well-design room. Why ? Because it will help the team being relaxed, focused and also creative. Don’t hesitate to rent a room elsewhere or going to a co-working place in your office’s city.
The nicer the workspace is, the less stressful meetings can be. An executive boardroom will always be better for Mancom meetings that cater to a much heavier load of issues that need to be resolved ASAP, may it be about people management or project management.
Prepare a script
If you have an upcoming demo for a client, unless you are a very talented and confident speaker, you will always need to prepare a script. This will be you thread as you deliver your presentation. It does not need to be verbatim but writing down the general ideas or keywords can help you convey your thoughts during your presentation. It can be a big help to minimize or even completely ease nervousness.
Prepare your PowerPoint presentation (or similar tools)
Unleash your creativity by preparing a well-designed presentation. You may even seek help from your teammates to review your presentation in case you miss something or you want a better eye on the design. An artistic presentation will always boost your confidence and will allow you to deliver your discussions well and more organized. It will also help your colleagues to understand better your presentation during the meeting
Practice in advance
People who do their homework are always the ones with greater chance at getting the gold. Practicing your presentation a few days before can help you organize your thoughts when delivering them on the actual day. Practice by following your script so you will never miss a chance during your presentation. You can also practice in front of your friends, or in front of the mirror to help you look more confident.
Meetings are exciting and can be fun if you are prepared and well-organized. Your responsibility as a skillful professional does not end in performing your daily routine alone but also making sure that the chemistry of your team is consistently intact during stressful meetings.