Thursday, February 10, 2011

On Calming Down at Work

Story #1
Sometimes I get really stressed out at work. When my deadlines are too tight, and I feel pressured to finished a project, and my computer freezes, I just need a minute to myself so I don't go insane. I have discovered that the smell of my hand lotion makes me instantly happier and calmer. I use Bath and Body Works Japanese Cherry Blossom amazing hand lotion. I love the smell so much and thankfully so does my office mate because I apply hand lotion about 4 times a day. My constant need for hand lotion application is an indirect result from me being a terrified of germs and washing my hands every hour. Maybe that's a direct result. Anyway, Japanese Cherry Blossom equals heaven.

The other day my computer froze while I was in the middle of trying to reach a 5:00 deadline. I hadn't saved in a little bit so needless to say I lost a lot of my work. For a moment I considered smashing my fist into my computer monitor but luckily I contained myself. I then considered crying, but I have a strict "No crying at work" policy. (Except for when I read really sad stories on and get a tear or two). So naturally, my last resort was Japanese Cherry Blossom. I ferociously lotioned my hands and it wasn't enough to ease my fury.

So then I had to do the next most obvious mechanism: I shut my eyes and cupped my hands around my nose and inhaled. I instantly felt better until my office mate said "Are you smelling your hands?"

"Yes I am. I think our boss would prefer me smell my Japanese Cherry Blossom over my punching my monitor."

Story #2:
The other day I got a bit overwhelmed at work. I had a few deadlines in a row and on top of that I had to work an extra hour each day of the week so that I can leave early on Friday and go SKIING with some friends for the weekend. Work just kept piling up and when I got home each night I had a laundry list of wedding tasks to complete.

I was working on a tight deadline and the 500 page document that I was working on kept becoming corrupt and crashing my system. The engineer who I was doing this specific project for is incredibly nice but was also pressuring me to complete the task sooner than I was able to. After the third time that my system crashed I was beyond frustrated. I sat at my desk for a minute and tried to think of the most relaxing environment that I could imagine. My mind instantly floated to yoga class. My yoga instructor puts on the best music during our practice and every now and then after class I go up to her and ask "What was that song that was playing while we were doing backbends?!" and then she has to try to remember where we were in our practice at that moment and then she can tell me the song.

I went to reliable grooveshark and typed in my favorite yoga song, "Bolo Ram" by Wah! I listen to this song at work when I need a minute to myself (or 15 minutes because the song is actually 15 minutes long. oh my.) I find myself sometimes mouthing the words during class which I think makes me a nerd but that's another story. So at my desk during my moment of frustration I put on my Wah! song and shut my eyes and took a deep breath while my computer rebooted. My boss of course walks in the moment that I am doing this and says:

"Did I catch ya in a snooze?"

I opened my eyes and said, "No, I am listening to yoga music."

Boss: "Did your computer crash?"

Me: "Yup"

Boss: "So did mine which is why I took a walk to your office so I wouldn't punch my monitor."

Me: "Yoga music works too."

Highlight the text after the star to reveal which story is true * The true story is story number 2. Although I do use Japanese Cherry Blossom lotion on a daily basis, I try not to inhale it. I do, however, calm myself with yoga music at work... and totally got caught by my boss.

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