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Disasters happen

You know those days that just go wrong from the beginning?

It’s like the universe is telling you to stay in bed. They’re the toe-stubbing, forget your pants, lose your keys kind of days. They happen— even to those of us who prepared.

The question is how we deal with them.

When S*@# happens

There are things we can do to make it easier. Some are proactive and some are reactive. What’s important is to stay calm.

Prepare physically and mentally

Some people will create checklists, while others will have everything in duplicate. Yes, that even means two computers. So when the slideshow doesn’t work on one, you can boot up the other. There will surely be something new come up that you haven’t thought of; but when it comes to presentations or events, you can think of a lot things that may go wrong and have a contingency in place.  Then, when you have all the physical planning in place, center yourself so you don’t crack under pressure.

Take it offline

Whether it’s a video you’re presenting or an angry client online, the best thing you can do is get everything offline. Don’t show your emotions, calmly put the computer mouse down, and have printed slides ready to distribute. If it’s an angry client or review, don’t make it personal or emotional. Find a way to communicate with the person directly as opposed to openly ,where everyone can see your responses.

Don't let it stick

It may feel like a gut punch every time something else happens to compound your day, but you have to roll with the punches and not let it affect what you do. Take a minute to center yourself and get back to it. The world waits for no one. Eventually, you’ll be able to laugh at it— the sooner the better, hopefully.

Focus on what's working

It isn’t all bad. You need to focus on what’s working and change on the fly so what people remember of that day is positive.

Press reset

If everything is so bad that you can’t see yourself resurfacing, then do what you can and do it all over again. Make sure to come back when you’re ready to fire on all cylinders. It may be direct by rescheduling a meeting to show a presentation or video again, or indirect by making an excuse to stop in and right all the wrongs you couldn’t get passed.

There are days your pencil will break, you’ll forget the computer cables, your computer will only show the blue screen of death, or you won’t be able to get online. The calamity of errors would be funny if it happened to someone else, right? Well, that’s how you have to think about it. If you can’t laugh at it yourself, you’ll end up crying, and that’s messy.


S*@# happens, get back up and do better next time!

Thanks for reading! Stay tuned for more content.

Jason Harris


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