Every person in our performance oriented society is influenced by inner attitudes, beliefs and behavioral programmes that either help or hinder him. In the minds of modern people there exist five principally hindering attitudes that have an influence on the behavior. These attitudes especially appear in distress and seem to be helpful, while in reality they create a lot of additional pressure and thus increase the level of distress. They are called drivers, because they have a bad influence on us and on the ones we deal with. These drivers also have an impact on our use of time and our self-management. They cannot be fulfilled or realized in completion because they demand something inachievable, because they want us to comply with them totally, always and everywhere.
1. Speed up! (or: Hurry-up!)
This driver causes us to do everything fast: To talk, to eat, to walk, to think, etc. People with this inner attitude and the corresponding behavior are always “chasing the deadline” and therefore in a constant hurry. They easily get to feel under time pressure and infect others with their speed, impatience and distress. Therefore it is very difficult or even impossible for them to create a relaxed and concentrated working atmosphere. Speed-up-people have and create the feeling that their never is enough time, not even to celebrate successes.
2. Be perfect!
Don’t make mistakes! Be super (wo) man! That is the inner message of this driver. Persons with this attitude and this behavior tend to perfectionism, doing things at least 100 % and with an exaggerated thoroughness in everything. They keep on improving and changing even well-working things and are hard to satisfy. They are anxious that something could be overseen or not be good enough. Thus they spend a lot of time and energy for unnecessary actions that could be invested in a better way.
3. Work (try) hard (regardless of the success)!
Persons with this attitude are not able and willing to accept a result that was achieved easily and without „blood, sweat and tears“. Every task is a major project that requires all of the personal energy. “Work hard, strain every nerve, never stop trying, hang on in there regardless of success or failure”: These are the inner messages of these people. Thus they make it hard for themselves and others to agree on realistic schedules, working with fun and enjoying successes, even more if they have been easy to achieve. Generally the effort is more important for them than the result.
4. Be tough!
Persons with this attitude do everything to appear tough, strong and invincible, to be a role model, to see things through and cope with all the problems and hardness’s on their own. To ask for or even accept help and showing some emotion is hard for them. Above all they have a problem with their own weaknesses. Therefore they need to hide them from others. So they often appear to be distant, showing their poker face and therefore are hard to guess. This can create quite a lot of communication and cooperation problems and lead to wrong planning and schedules and hidden conflicts.
5. Be nice! (Be compliant!)
Persons with this inner attitude are convinced that others are more important than themselves. They feel responsible for the well-being of the others. Because helping others is priority No. 1 they postpone their own tasks and demands and thus get into time pressure and delay. Additionally they try to avoid conflicts and thus delay necessary clarifications and solutions to conflicts. This causes delays, increases the level of tension within the team and leads to growing tensions and conflicts which have to be solved later on with an extra investment of time and energy.
How to lower your stress level and gain time and energy: Give yourself allowances!
Hidden behind the drivers there is the basic belief: „I am o.k. if … I hurry up, am always perfect, etc.“ If I do not fulfill this inner expectation – which is not possible -, I get the feeling that „I am not o.k., because …” This feeling ends up in anger or depression. In order to avoid this feeling in the future I will try to solve my problems even faster, more perfectionistic etc., and that way I get into an increasing vicious circle.
We can break away from this vicious circle by replacing the drivers with allowances.
|Lose time by … (driver)||Win time by … (allowances)|
|1. Hurry up!||I may take my time (for me and others)|
|2. Be perfect!||
I may quit at 80 %, take a risk and be as human and imperfect as I am.
|3. Work (Try) hard!||I may do it in a relaxed way and enjoy myself. I have the license for success.|
|4. Be tough!||
I may show emotions and weaknesses and get help.
|5. Be nice!||
I am important, too. I may be myself with all my needs and wants and can stand for them.