Posted by Robert Half on Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - 00:00 | Follow me
Halloween brings the fun kind of scary (zombies and all), but the office can create less-welcoming fears. Are you afraid of speaking up at work because you're concerned about what others will think of your ideas? Do you avoid volunteering because you're afraid you'll fail?
Letting work anxiety and fears get the best of you will keep you from advancing in your career — and keep you up all night, turning you into a zombie. Here are five ways to sidestep this problem:
1. Think positively
This tip may seem easier said than done, but you really can overcome anxiety and fear by imagining yourself successfully doing what you’re afraid of doing. Visualize delivering a presentation to a captive audience of coworkers or putting the finishing touches on a major project. The positive mind game may be all you need to put your fears and anxieties at bay.
2. Consider the worst-case scenario
When you feel anxious or afraid, thinking about the worst that could happen sometimes helps. Most likely “the worst” isn’t so bad or is highly unlikely. If your boss doesn’t like the first draft of your report, you aren’t going to get fired. You will learn more about her expectations, which will be a plus in itself.
3. Put yourself in challenging situations
Afraid of speaking up during meetings? Overcome the fear with the goal of speaking up at least once during each meeting. By practicing the act regularly, you’ll see that it’s not as terrifying as you thought it was. Before you know it, you might be the one leading meetings!
4. Talk it out
Talk with a trusted listener about any fear you have. Ask the person for his thoughts on the matter, and really listen. You may find that overcoming fear and anxiety is sometimes a matter of getting it out of your head.
5. Have a plan B
If you’re afraid of failing at something, devise a backup plan to give you the comfort that the world will not end if it doesn’t work out. It may help to relieve anxiety and give you confidence to move forward.
How do you overcome anxiety at work? Let us know in the comments section.