My friend Karim has a long commute and he’s noticed that drivers have become more aggressive over the past few years. He found himself feeling stress and getting frustrated from it. He mentioned his frustration to his family and his 13-year-old daughter told him “Dad, DLL.” Now, you and I, as technologists probably associate DLL with Dynamic Link Libraries which are small computer files containing code used by the computer’s operating system. That, however, is not the type of DLL Karim’s daughter was talking about. To her, DLL was a reminder of a technique for dealing with stressful situations that are beyond your control. To her, DLL stands for Drop it, leave it, let it go.
Stress Management for IT Pros
Jobs in IT can be stressful. Heck, life has its times of stress. Certainly, you can try to avoid stressful situations, but the reality is that you will have times of stress. What you can do is control your response to the stress in your job or other areas of your life. The well-known Serenity Prayer of Reinhold Niebuhr offers great wisdom (regardless of your religious beliefs) on dealing with life’s complications, including stress: “Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” In other words, if it’s beyond your control, drop it, leave it, let it go.
Responding to Stress
I was on a plane getting ready to pull back from the gate when the pilot announced that he’d discovered a mechanical defect with the aircraft. He said he wasn’t comfortable flying it and that we were going to deplane all the passengers and try to find another jet. A woman behind went crazy. She started yelling and cursing. I thought to myself, “Ma’am, the pilot doesn’t want to fly this plane. Are you sure you want to ride on it?” Of course, I didn’t know her story. Perhaps it was her third flight problem of the day or maybe she was trying to visit a sick or dying relative. Regardless, her angry and volatile response to the problem certainly wasn’t going to solve it. In fact, it may have made it worse by raising her blood pressure and heart rate and alienating the airline staff who could help her. A more appropriate and effective response might have been for her to say to herself something like “Well, this is certainly not what I wanted to have happen and it’s making me feel angry.”, to pause for a moment to gain her composure, and then to call the airline to discover what her options were. She couldn’t control the pilot’s safety-based decision, so she needed to DLL (drop it, leave it, let it go) and take appropriate action based on what was within her control.
Look, sometimes other people are going to do bone-headed things that will annoy you, companies will make decisions you don’t like, or forces of nature may literally rain on your parade. When things happen that are out of your control, it’s your choice as to how your respond. You can try to fight it, but if it’s truly beyond your control, you’ll just get angry and frustrated and nothing good will come out of it. Or, you can choose to DLL, to drop it, leave it, let it go, and move on to doing something productive instead.
For More Ideas on How to Improve Communication and Customer Service Skills
Bring my IT customer service training seminar onsite to your location for your group, small or large. I have programs that can fit nearly any budget. Click here for the course description and outline.
Subscribe to My Free IT Customer Service Training
Sign up for my free IT customer service training by email, The 5 Principles of IT Customer Service Success. The course includes the free version of my new IT customer service book The 5 Principles of IT Customer Service Success and eight free customer service lessons by email.
Please Leave a Comment
If you find this post helpful, please share it and leave a comment.