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Coping with the Unexpected

Life happens.  It happens in its own way and on its own schedule regardless of our plans, needs or wants.

Case in point: my webinar scheduled for March 13th.   I had a great registration and a terrific session which I had spent weeks creating.  I thought this was a perfect recipe for success.  I was wrong.  Only minutes into the session my internet crashed ending the webinar.

I had done hundreds of webinars through the years without ever experiencing such a major problem.  I managed to stay fairly calm as I did the few things I could think of to try to get my internet back up.  In the end though I was unable to save the event.

It was a stressful and frustrating experience for me because not only had technology failed me it had failed all my audience and there was no way to let them know why, since I remained without internet access for almost twenty-four hours.

How do you think you would have handled that type of experience or one similar to it?

All things considered I handled it fairly well and definitely better than I would have in the past.  At first I was overwhelmed by disappointment and upset by my inability to explain the situation to my audience.  I consider everything I do with Financial Social Work a reflection of the high quality and commitment we have to our entire community; I regretted that through no fault of our own we had let people down.

As the first hour passed I recognized the need to stop thinking about what had happened and to start focusing on what I would/could do once I had the internet back.

Focusing on a solution was far more beneficial than lamenting the problem.  As always, action empowered positive thinking and behavior, instead of negative thinking which only contributes to greater worry and stress.

Can you think of a situation in your own life when practicing a similar coping strategy would have been more helpful than the way you handled it?

  • Try being proactive instead of reactive when faced with the unexpected.
  • Identify what you can do to improve a situation, rather than on allowing yourself to become overwhelmed by it.

You will be glad you did.