Sunday, February 12, 2017

3 Ways To Deal With Undesirable Situations: Go Along, Get Along, or Get Out!

Wow! So this is what it's come down to?... 

You're now faced with an undesirable situation that does not sit well with you and you have to determine the best way to move forward - and you know that standing still is not an option. How do you decide what to do?

Do you go along, get along, or get out?

Life has a way of teaching us even when we don't want to be taught. Undesirable situations are one of the best ways that life grows us up by throwing us curve balls. We can take the classes, learn the lessons, and move forward to the next grade level or we can hold ourselves back in summer school by not paying attention. 

One of the best ways to advance is to learn from the wisdom and mistakes of others. Three lessons that I have learned about dealing with undesirable situations are revealed below.

What you're supposed to do when you don't like a thing is change it.

If you can't change it, change the way you think about it.

Don't complain.

-Dr. Maya Angelou, Poet, Actor, Civil Rights Activist (1928-2014)


3 Ways To Deal With Undesirable Situations

Some situations are just not worth the fight and that list of situations is unique to a person depending on priorities and focus. Others situations are worth life and limb which may require every ounce of internal strength and massive support systems to resolve. Either way it's best to strategically pick your battles so you can win the war when the time comes. 

Decide on the best course of action and move forward.



No need to mention it again but changes are constant so it's important to have tools that help us to handle them quickly and with sound judgment. 

When do you GO ALONG?

Undesirable situations may be as simple as a messed up haircut or as complex as an adjustment to routines and relationships. Changes in social status, work patterns, or connections may cause a slight twinge of discomfort. For simple changes, it may be best to "GO ALONG" to keep stress low and to keep it movin'. Minor shifts in normal patterns may be necessary, but the discomfort may not last long as new realities takes hold. 

When do you GET ALONG?

Stepping it up a bit where situations in sensitive areas such as adjustments in family status or significant changes in role expectations may dramatically increase anxiety depending on the amount of control we feel like we have. 

Adjustments to financial status, challenges within trusted relationships, or in work environments can make us reach for the alarm, but often these types of situations require reflection, deliberation, and planning in order to "GET ALONG" in the moment or long term. Major shifts to norms will likely be necessary as new relationships emerge and new environments take shape. Hang in there...

When do you GET OUT!?

Now step it up even more where changes create full-force threats to health and well-being and it's time to pull the ripcord and GET OUT! 

Undesirable situations such as direct assaults on values, beliefs, and reputations, disruptions in time-tested truths, moral earthquakes that interfere with family relationships and business opportunities - or physical threats such as health scares or physical, emotional, spiritual crises - all require bottom up and top down crises resolution strategies. At this level, discomfort has become overwhelming and the way forward is - out. 

Though it is critical to make decisions and take rapid steps towards safety when the platform is on fire, it is also important to keep calm and move forward in an orderly fashion so that you do not trip and fall. This is where your life-work integration strategy drills come in handy.

Do you have a life-work integration strategy?



At the end of the day, take it all in stride and do the best you can with what you have - and then get some coaching to do even better next time. It takes a while to assimilate new ways of being so be patient with yourself.


Researchers have found that it takes on average 66 days (~8 weeks) for people to create new habits - ranging from 18 to 254 days until new habits become 95% automatic

-Phillippa Lally et. al, European Journal of Social Psychology


Undesirable situations come and go. Undesirable people come and go. Undesirable circumstances come and go. What remains is your ability to deal with undesirable changes, people, and circumstances as they come and go.



Lillian Gregory is a passionate advocate for 21st Century Leadership with special focus on Women in Leadership, Women in Technologyand US Veterans and Spouses. She provides research, strategies, tools, workshops, and events to help close leadership and career strategy gaps. Download your eBook from The Institute for Human and Leadership Excellence and get ready to climb!

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