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I remember walking out the door of my house several years ago on a cold winter morning. My garage juts out along the walkway and on this morning, I heard an unusual hissing sound emanating from inside of it. All too often, I disregard unusual noises as nothing to worry about, but in this case, the noise was too loud for me to overlook.

Upon entering the garage, I quickly discovered the source; the water pipe running along the side had burst and water was spilling into the garage. I quickly turned it off and began the clean up. I was fortunate that it didn’t appear that much time had passed and nothing was damaged. A close call…

That close call has kept me shutting off the water every mid-November to assure that those pipes don’t ever burst again!

Pipes bursting can be caused by a number of things. In this case, the pressure built up because of the temperature. Other times, pipes can become clogged or obstructed and increased pressure will ultimately lead to eruptions. We most likely think of things like water pipes or even our own human arteries as vessels that if met with another pressure, will burst and cause damage and destruction.

In our business and life, we are also susceptible to pressures taking their toll and causing breakdowns and damage.

In a year that has seen mounting pressures to our business and personal lives, how free-flowing are your “pipes?’

The stress and anxiety over cash flow, revenue decline, virtual employees, kids in virtual schools (causing tension to employees), social unrest, political hostility, and continued uncertainty over a global pandemic are all obstructions to that free flow  through your “pipes.”

Just like we need to shut off the water in winter to ease the stress on freezing pipes, we also need to prevent and respond to the stress on our business and life that has been mounting for seven months. Here are a few tips to helping ease that pressure:

  1. Check in on your employees and co-workers. Most of us are pretty good at hiding stress, be it financial, physical, mental, or emotional. Often just a quick word of encouragement or simply recognition goes a long way to easing that anxiety. 
  2. Document conversations and decisions. In times of stress, humans can often forget what was decided upon or what was said. There is so much going through our heads that it’s easy to forget what we were tasked to do, or what next steps in a process are. Taking that extra step to document will actually alleviate that stress.
  3. Start preparing for 2021 today. We never know what calamity is lurking around the corner to distract us. Finalizing financial budgets, organizational projects, and marketing strategies now means you’re in a position of being ahead of the game, rather than frantically trying to catch up later.
  4. Self-care. Over a recent two-week period, I found myself in a rut of less exercise/movement, more poor food choices, and decreased “down time.” My response is to now hold myself accountable by setting reminders alarms and keeping track of activities on a spreadsheet to assure that I stay focused on positive self-care. Its easy to get out of sync, and I’ve found that creating and keeping metrics and feedback is my best way to get back on track.

Bottom line: The best way to avoid pressure building up and bursting pipes is to make sure the water is flowing freely without obstructions. That works for your water pipes, your arteries, AND your business and life. Take steps now – today – to unclog your distractions and obstructions and allow your business and life to unleash the positive flow of success and happiness.

Be unleashed.

Quote of the Day:

“There are really three parts to the creative process. First there is inspiration, then there is the execution, and finally there is the release.”

~ Eddie Van Halen

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