When You’re Exhausted But Still Need to Do One More Thing – Do This
August 27, 2018
We’ve all been there.
Work is crazy. Email is backing up. The kids forgot their lunch. And all you want to do is go home and take a two-day nap.
And yet you still have to nail one more big thing.
What do you do?
“Those are the days when you need to dig deep and find that something extra,” LinkedIn Learning Instructor Lisa McLeod said in her course, Finding Your Focus at Work. “And that something extra is serotonin, and it's a game-changer.”
A 10-Second Game-Changer That’ll Give You That Second-Wind
So, what is McLeod talking about? How do you get a rush of serotonin, which will give you the energy needed to finish that last big task?
It comes down to stating your purpose. Best-case you reiterate your personal purpose statement and how this task fits in. But, if you don’t have one or it doesn’t totally fit, tell yourself why you are doing this task and why it matters.
For example – before McLeod goes into any client meeting, she tells herself, “I am here to help people make money and make a difference.”
This simple act – stating the bigger purpose behind the task you are about to take on – will give you the energy you need and put you in the right mindset to do great work.
“When you stop to breathe and think, your brain releases more serotonin and dopamine,” McLeod said. “It makes you happier, it makes you mentally stronger and it happens in just 10 seconds.”
Additionally, if your big task involves meeting with others, start it by walking into the meeting, making strong eye contact with everyone you meet and smiling at them. That’ll not only increase your energy level, it’ll increase theirs as well.
“People feel like you've seen them, you've heard them,” McLeod said. “It takes the entire interaction to a higher level emotionally.”
McLeod did this in her personal life as well when she was a parent of two young daughters. Right before she’d get home from a particularly stressful day, rather than bring that stress home to her, she’d remind herself of the bigger purpose.
“I would imagine my daughters, and I would tell myself, ‘self, the future President of the United States is on the other side of this door, and so is her Secretary of State’,” McLeod said. “And they deserve for their parent to be fully present.’ And then I would open the door, and I would look them right in the eye. And I would smile. And this might seem kind of cheesy, but, for me, the idea that this moment in time matters, that how I conduct myself right here, right now, this will affect future events.”
Want to learn more? Watch McLeod’s full course, Finding Your Purpose at Work.
Videos within that course include:
- How to Claim a Purpose
- Money and Meaning
- The Art of the Frame
- Animate Meetings Using Stories
- How to Communicate With Senior Leadership