Microstress & Team Performance

Microstress and Team Performance

In this episode of the TeamWork a Better Way podcast, Christian Napier
and Spencer Horn are joined by special guest and certified, burn-out
speaker, Lyndsey Van Sickle. They will explore how microstress can
affect team dynamics and share strategies for managing microstress as a
team. Whether you're a team leader or a team member, you'll learn how to
identify and address microstress within your team, ultimately improving
your collective performance and achieving your goals more effectively.

-------------- --------------------------------------------------------
Christian Hello, everyone, and welcome to another episode of the
Teamwork A Better Way podcast. I'm Christian Napier,
joined by the man. And I don't know what colour of blue
is that kind of a powder.

Spencer It's I don't know what it is, but I'm having blue.

Christian But it's very nice. Spencer. Spencer Horn. How are you

Spencer I'm fabulous. How are you doing, Christian?

Christian I'm doing well. And congratulations once again battling
the LinkedIn technology gods here at the last minute to
get us all connected.

Spencer What the heck? I'm sorry, all our listeners, we had to
do a last minute login and then I had it up on my
computer. So fail today. Forgive me for that.

Christian It's all good, but we're not failing because we have an
amazing guest, Spencer, to talk about a super important
topic. So, Spencer, why don't you go ahead and introduce

Spencer Yeah, I mean, today we are talking about microstress and
just the impacts of that. And yesterday I was talking to
one of the most amazing people that I happen to know and
I did not realise all her expertise in this area of
stress. And I'm like, we can't be talking about this
without that kind of level of expertise. And so she
graciously agreed to join us, and that's none other than
the amazing Lyndsey Van Sickle. And so I want to share
our listeners a little bit about Lyndsey. Lyndsey and I
met through the National Speakers Association and I know
you met her as well here. And you know what? She's just
an incredible individual. She's a great leader,
entrepreneur. But I'm going to read a little bit about
her bio because I want you to know a little bit more
about her expertise. And she's a certified burnout
speaker, so she speaks to businesses around the country
and she knows what it's like to live under immense
pressure and sees how the stresses of our day block
productivity and passion. And it's so true. Her keynotes
and hands on focus of life's unsaid, those little
unsaids are the real cause of Burnout, and to help
professionals get back to their original passion is
really one of her passions. So Lyndsey is the author of
the Black Book and she serves on the board of the
National Speakers Association. I'm so excited to have
her on our board of National Speakers Association
Mountain West chapter. She is a passionate wife and a
mama to four. So awesome. And has a love of speaking and
outdoor adventures with her family. And they have a dog
named Cubby, who is really more of a rug than a dog. Do
you never take him on those outdoor adventures or her?

Lyndsey We do. We take him out in the mountains right by us and,
oh, he loves it. He lounges around.

Spencer Well, welcome, Lyndsey. We are so glad to have you. So
tell us a little bit about this Black Book that you have
called The Black Book.

Lyndsey Well, thanks for having me on. I love working with being
with you too. Well, the Black book, it's all about
microstress. I've been so excited. We're talking about
microstress because it's these little things every day
that we don't acknowledge, right? That's microstresses,
someone saying something to us or feeling a certain way,
and after a while, those things are what pile up. And
The Black Book is designed to release all of those to
acknowledge the microstresses before they get so heavy,
all that heaviness of stress, right?

Spencer Well, absolutely. Go ahead, Christian.

Christian I was just going to say what really prompted this
discussion was an article that appeared recently in
Harvard Business Review by Rob Cross and Karen Dillon
that's focused on microstress. And I wasn't really
familiar with it. I mean, we've all heard about stress,
but this thing called microstress, it was kind of a new
thing to me. And now that we have the author of The
Black Book that talks about this, I'm really curious. In
your opinion, in your view, Lyndsey, what's the
difference between the two? What's the difference
between what is a microstress and what's the difference
between, quote unquote, microstress and regular stress?

Lyndsey Well, do you ever feel the pressure that's built up and
that we were just talking about? Or you're just like, I
feel really stressed out or maybe anxious, but you say,
nothing huge has happened in my life. Nobody died. I
don't know why I feel this way. Like we want some big
reason, right? Those would be those big stressors in our
life. A parent getting divorced, losing a close friend
of major illness. We all go through a lot of these
things. But what about all of those just little day to
day things, those unsaids, like we said? Because it
really is the things we don't say that over time build
up and build up, and you can start to feel like you're
holding these closet doors shut that are just bursting.
That's how real those microstresses can be when not
looked at.

Spencer I love that. It's just something that we're normally not
paying attention to and a lot of people that are high
performers and I know you and your husband, as
entrepreneurs, are managing businesses, and you just
kind of go through the day grinding and doing what's
expected of you, and it's like, well, that's just what
we got to do. We've got to deal with the challenges.
Entrepreneurs, you're the boss, but what about those
stresses that come from caring and worrying about your
people and making sure that they have enough hours that
you're developing them, that you're helping them to
succeed? I mean, those are little things that you carry
and that you worry about. You think, well, that's no big
deal. That's part of my job. But those little things
start to add up. I remember Lyndsey and Christian, one
of the things that Lyndsey and I bonded over a little
bit is our joint association with a company called
Rapport Leadership, where I used to work there for seven
and a half years and was the CEO. And I remember taking
over in that role as the CEO. Now I was the boss, but I
don't think I really realised over a year, a year and a
half, all of those microstress is starting to add up.
And it had a negative impact on my health, on my mental
well being, on my family, on my employees, because it's
circular. I mean, it creates impacts throughout the
entire organisation and team and everybody that
associates with us. And I remember my wife saying she's
just praying that something would happen for me to
leave. And something did happen. And, Lyndsey, when I
left, I had all of a sudden, I had this time and I
started mountain biking and I felt guilty, I felt my,
gosh, I'm taking time for myself, which I hadn't done in
years. And all of a sudden, I could start to think and
ideas started coming to me and I was like, I need to do
this more, because I didn't realise how much stress I
was under. And I think a lot of high performing,
hardworking people this happens to, they just don't
realise, because it isn't that big thing that you talked
about a loss of a job or a loved one or something
happened major in their life. It's just little things
every single day that over time, really add up.

Lyndsey Oh, they do. That's a perfect example and story. I
think. We all find ourselves all of a sudden, how did I
get here? We don't know what happened and we feel the
tension and we're not ourselves and it takes a little
while to get out of it. But it's such a hopeful place to
be when there's such simple things we can do in those
places, and to know that we're totally normal, right?
We're all here to experience life, experience these
pains. And the pains, those really aren't the problem.
We all go through them and feel them. It's more the
ideas behind them and the letting them build up.

Spencer So you talk about pain. So why is it that pain feels so

Lyndsey Right? It's so uncomfortable. Well, I like to think of
pain as a sign. Pain is a sign of something coming up,
to be looked at, to be felt. It's showing us an area
where we can bridge the gap between pain and move over
to power if we're willing to go there and see what the
pain is showing us.

Spencer Yeah, I'm hoping you're going to tell us how we're going
to do that a little later.

Lyndsey Yeah, I will tell you right now, if you want.

Christian I would like to know that, but I would actually like to
understand from you a little bit, Lyndsey, how you came
about this. I mean, was this something that you had
focused on for your entire career? Was it a situation
where I'm going through life, I'm killing it, I'm doing
what I'm doing. But man, I'm struggling and I'm burned
out. I'm tired. How did you arrive at this place where
you decided, I'm going to focus here on this microsding,
I'm going to write a book about it, I'm going to tackle
this subject and I'm going to help people.

Lyndsey I'll tell you what happened. I had a lot of my life
where I would be super motivated, push hard and just
crash over and over and over. And I got to a spot when
it was in my late twenty s. I had lived most of my life
without letting myself really feel most of what was
going on, or even significant traumas, small traumas.
Those things, those unceds that build up. Like, people
wonder, well, where do these unsaids come from? They
start from childhood, not being picked for a team, not
feeling yourself, having problems with a friend. Right?
And then we don't look at these things. And I hadn't
looked at them. And I got to be a teenager and had a lot
bigger things happening. And as an adult, the pressure
and the weight that build up was just so high. I
remember sitting on my bed one day about ten years ago.
My legs are crossed, my journal sprawled open on my lap,
and I'm just planning to write in my journal these
boring, mundane details of life. I had a couple of kids
at that time. I could hear them running around the
house. But those pressures, everything that had just
built up, I mean, every day I felt like I woke up and I
just put this mask on. This mask that just said,
everything's fine, life's great, I'm just going to go
about things like normal. But what's happening inside?
I'm feeling anxious, I'm feeling depressed, I'm feeling
all those unsets. And that day I could tell that if I
kept going down this same path of just pushing it all
away, like is so tempting to do because it's painful,
it's uncomfortable. I could tell I was going to end up
in the same place I was and had run its course. I was
miserable. And I don't know if that's exactly why, but I
told myself, I'm going to say whatever this is, all this
tension, I can feel all this stress, I'm just going to
get it all out. I'm going to just say whatever comes. I
don't know what it'll be. I told myself, it'll be fine,
I'll just tear it all up. But first I got up off of the
bed. I tiptoed over the bedroom door. I peeked out, make
sure the kids weren't watching. I locked the bedroom
door. It felt so like just it felt scandalous to look at
the things that I was feeling, what was really going on.
And I got back to my bed and I just scribbled out all
those the frustrations, the things that felt so unjust,
the things I wished were different. Everything that I
had always said, no, Lyndsey, that's not okay to feel.
Push it away. Everything I was so mad and so frustrated
and so angry about, I let it go. I got it all out. I
scribbled it. It was three pages, front and back. And
then I tore it into teeny little pieces, ripped it all
up and peeked out the door again, took it to my outside
garbage and I threw it all in there. And at the time, I
didn't think much of it. I felt a little bit of relief,
though. And looking back, that is the time in my life
when things started to change. I don't know if you can
imagine, for somebody who never validated themselves,
never acknowledged anything that was going on, to
suddenly give myself permission, like what we're talking
about here, to just say it all, to just get it out
instead of pushing it away, to stop fearing it. It all
started to loosen its grip on me and the stress started
to release a couple of days later. Of course, I felt
that, the pressure again, the anxiety, and I grabbed for
that journal again. I shredded through a few more pages
of it. I switched to cheap notebooks eventually. And
then a few years later, I created this black book
because I was finally free. With that permission. I
started to feel myself, to feel happy, to feel
confident. It was all of the things I feared that had
their hold on me. Not any of the pain, not anything that
had really happened.

Spencer Why do you think, Lyndsey, that I know that people who
are listening are relating to what you're saying, and I
certainly do. That we allow those feelings to build up
and just ignore them. What's going on there, do you

Lyndsey Well, think about our society. When we're going through
a struggle, it's immediately like, what's the first
words that come into your mind, either of you, when you
think of going through something hard in life?

Spencer Well, just deal with it. Man up, just push through. It's
going to get better. Or we'll get through this.

Lyndsey Yeah, get through it. Hurry and finish it, move past it,
let it go. Or sometimes we think, what's wrong with me?
And so we've learned from a young age, like, avoid pain.
Pain is bad, but what if it's not the pain so much as
those feelings of it being bad, of it being wrong,
something we don't want to experience. One of my
favourite things I love to think about is, are either of
you roller coaster fans? Do you love? Are you kidding?

Christian When I was younger, yeah, I have to watch children on
roller coasters.

Spencer I just went on the Accredit coaster a couple of weeks
ago. But my favourite is that Velociraptor in Orlando.
The Universal Studios.

Lyndsey That's scary roller coaster. Oh, I love it, too.

Spencer Keep my hands up the entire time. My arms are sore
because there's a lot of G's man.

Lyndsey I love them too. My very favourite is Everest. Do you
like that one at Animal Kingdom?

Spencer I haven't been on Everest.

Lyndsey Okay, well, you get to the top and all of a sudden the
whole track is gone. Like, it doesn't look like it's
gone. It's gone. And then the car, you think you're
about to go off the edge and then all of a sudden you
start going backwards and you shoot up this massive hill
and there's this big drop and you go down and what is
everybody doing? Everybody's just like, screaming in
delight, loving it. We're all living our best lives,
right? But what if sometimes some of the things that we
experience here in this life that feel so painful or
that are such a struggle, what if it was a little bit
more like the roller coaster? It's a big draw, but we're
just riding it and then it's over. We don't get off the
roller coaster and just be like, that was so stressful.
I need to relive this. What does this say about me? I
love the emotions, the feelings. I love to just picture
them like, I'm going over the roller coaster and I'm
letting it go. I'm feeling it. It doesn't say anything.
Or like a wave just crashing over you from the ocean.
You feel it and before you know it, it's gone. Because
we aren't meant to carry that heaviness about anything
that we go through, about the things that we experience,
those are the experiences our soul craves. It's not
something bad.

Christian Was my turn to get stepped on. Spencer, thank you very
much for that. I'm actually curious from from both your
perspectives, your your life experiences, Lyndsey and
Spencer, when you were having these pile ups of
microstresses and you just weren't feeling right, how
did that not just impact you emotionally and physically,
but did that have impacts on others? Whether it was your
family, people that you worked with on your team, et
cetera, how did those microstresses kind of manifest
themselves over time in your life, not just internally,
but also with the people that were around you?

Lyndsey Well, they took up all the space. What was that,

Spencer I said you go first.

Lyndsey Oh, me. Okay. It took up all that space and so there
wasn't a clearness, a clarity to bring in more of what I
wanted. I felt very stuck, very shut down. I couldn't
reach my business goals, not because I wasn't capable,
but because all the space was taken. And when I was with
people that I wanted to enjoy being with, coworkers, my
husband, my kids, I felt like I couldn't be present
because that was always in my head, on my mind. In fact,
the very, very first step, I believe, to being more
engaged with the people you're with, to feeling more
confident, to having a clear mind is looking at those
unsets and acknowledging them. That's what will free
your mind. Like there's some real power.

Spencer Yeah, for sure. Christian I'm going to share just two
examples from clients, and one was from this project
manager that had a team of five people. And she cared
about these five people very much. She was a great
manager. Part of the microstress was just the anxiety of
protecting her team from some of the other members of
leadership. That took up some of her mental space. And
there came an opportunity for her to perhaps get a
promotion so that she could be in a role that would
actually help her to protect her team even more. I mean,
this is how she was thinking. And so those were
microstresses that were building up. The problem was
that she was more concerned about being so behaving in a
certain way that she ended up not getting the job
because she wasn't willing to get a little more
uncomfortable. She was already experiencing the stress
and she just felt like, if I just be the best manager I
could possibly be, then it's going to work out for me.
And she didn't really address a lot of the stress that
was happening and that prevented her from thinking
clearly. And I'll talk about why that happens in just a
second. And another client of mine, this was a
healthcare provider, and the nurses were impacted by a
doctor that would come in. Brilliant doctor, brilliant
doctor. But he would come in with different moods every
single day. So none of the team knew what to expect. And
it created a tremendous amount of anxiety. So the nurses
started putting a secret signal on the board where they
have all the patients in the rooms that they're in.
There was a little signal that they would put in that
all the nurses would look at to know what kind of day it
was going to be, based on the mood of the doctor so that
they could be prepared for that and deal with that
stress. Well, eventually those stresses build up and
that doctor ended up having to go. But it had an
incredible impact, negative impact on the productivity
of that team. And they had to go through a major
transformation to get through it. But now they are just
absolutely thriving. But at that time, Christian, it was
terribly impacting their productivity. Just how they
worked together, how they felt about each other, and
then they would take those feelings home. As Lyndsey was
talking about, it impacted their family. Here's just a
little example of a microstress. Right, so if you're
watching, great. If you're listening, this is from the
Harvard Business Review. And the example is Rita
receives a late day email request from a new manager.
Well, then she gets excited about that in terms of more
anxious than excited. So she's got to deal with this
email. So she spends 2 hours of her evening alerting her
team about this work request. The team has to get on it.
They spend 20 hours after work hours getting everything
ready to meet the new boss's demands because they don't
know what he's going to be like. And then Rita's team is
complaining to her about the new boss. That's the
secondary ripple. The tertiary ripple is rita is short
with her husband after her stressful, commute and all
kinds of things. She skips dinner with her son, so she
misses out on family time because she's fulfilling the
requirements of her boss. She's worrying about
neglecting her family. That builds up. And other team
members are experiencing similar things. So it has a
ripple effect that goes on and on and on.

Christian Christian, it's like the butterfly effect. Remember that
movie? Yes. Some small thing ends up creating a huge
issue. So what do we do about it? Okay, so we have these
microstresses. Is it just as simple, Lyndsey, as writing
it all out on pieces of paper and then shredding them up
and throwing them in the trash? Or what can be done to
alleviate this kind of pressure that we're all feeling?
Because I think this is something that we are all
dealing with. I'll be the first to admit I'm not living
like the happy go lucky, everything Sunky, dory rainbows
and unicorns kind of life. This message really resonates
with me, which is one of the reasons I wanted to talk
about it. So, okay, I'm in this position. I'm feeling
that stress. I'm ready to whip out my proverbial journal
and start writing stuff out. Is that going to cure it
for me, or are there other things that I need to look
at? Maybe. Spencer, you talked about you got outside,
you started mountain biking, you started exercising, you
started doing things. What are some of those things that
we can do to kind of, A, alleviate this acute pressure
that we're feeling from these microstress system? B,
preventive measures that will allow us to maintain
ourselves in a good state without allowing these
microstresses to just accumulate again?

Lyndsey Right. Well, there's a lot of ways to go about it.
Right. And Spencer going in the outdoors, me with
writing, with other things. The big key, really, when
you're in a lot of stress, to feel more powerful, to
feel more yourself, is that permission piece. Are you
feeling things? And it might not be in writing. Are you
able to sit quietly with yourself? Are you able to take
moments in nature or in your room and to ask yourself,
if everything fell away today, what would I still be
doing? It's those sorts of the questions, the quiet
meditation, the being with yourself, the feeling, what's
really going on in your life that will start to release
it because you're there with it instead of the avoiding,
you're finding that permission if the shred writing
resonates with you. That's what I do most mornings to
really acknowledge. But I like to be in thought. I like
to feel to go in nature. I know my mom, a huge thing she
does is she goes on long walks and she'll yell at the
end of this empty cul de sac. A coworker that I know of,
she loves to just get it out in her car when she's
alone. How are you going to give yourself permission
rather than pushing away and ignoring?

Spencer Those are great ideas. And I think one of the other
causes of a microstress is taking on too much. There are
some people who want to help be a team player, and so
when somebody is not doing their job, they're stepping
in and filling that gap. So one of the ways to prevent
that microstress from building up is to learn how to say
no and to be comfortable with that. And that's hard for
some people to not be that. I feel like I'm not being a
team player. Right, Christian, you're like, hey,
somebody's not doing there. It's just going to take me
an extra 15 minutes. I'll just step in and do it. But
the problem is that happens again and again and again
because the more you do that, the more you're empowering
your team to let you do that. And so learning how to say
no and letting them step up will be uncomfortable, but
it will empower you to make sure that that stress is not
building up because it'll get to a point where it'll
blow if you don't say no and address it early on. So
that's one of the ways to do that. Also dealing with
this, get rid of the technology as much as possible. I
feel like I have some addiction to this stupid
technology. And we're always on, we're always getting
buzzers and bells and whistles and notifications, turn
those off, go analogue as much as possible. That's
something I think is really important. And there's more.
So did that jog anything else?

Christian Yeah, it just reinforced to me that we're all unique and
we're different and we'll have to find our recipe that
will help us to deal with this. It reminds me of, I
guess it was March when we had the Thrive Conference and
we asked a question for NSA. What's the biggest thing or
most important thing that you've done to build a
successful speaking business? And 44 people there at
Thrive recorded videos answering that question and they
gave 24 different answers, like very different answers.
I think you're right. And it's okay probably to
experiment a little bit and find out what's going to
work for you. So whether it's mountain biking or whether
it's the right and shred method, going for a drive and
yelling at the top of your lungs in your car, hopefully
with your windows rolled up, yeah, whatever those things
are, you can find those things. So I appreciate you all
sharing those wonderful ideas. How do we keep them from
coming back from resurfacing? Or is it just one of those
kind of regular maintenance things you're just going to
have to purges like spring cleaning? You just got to do
it on a regular basis. You got to get rid of these
things and not feel too bad about yourself if some of
these things pop up again.

Lyndsey Well, as long as we're here and living, they're just
going to keep coming back up in different layers. And
every day we're a different person. So it's a new
opportunity to see it in new light, to let go of more.
So it's really that continuous. I imagine that first
time I started to look at things in that shred writing
was monumental for me. But doing it daily or every few
days for the past ten years, that's what's made it so.
That's what's really given me the power, the real power.
And also just when I listen to what you're saying,
Christian and I love it so much, it just reminds me so
much of trust. Like, I know that myself. I'm going to
lead myself where I need to go to find relief for the
stress. I know that I'm going to be okay and that I'm
going to end up getting the answers I need and to keep
following those and trusting that we have the answers
that we need inside. Of course, the more I can lean on
that and trust that, then I'll keep finding more and
more relief and I just keep showing up for it's.

Spencer Right. You know, chris and I think there also gets to be
some acknowledgment that we cause stress for others,
those microstresses. So we're not only receiving them,
we're causing them. And as Lyndsey said, as long as
we're alive, we're going to continue to have them. So
learning, gaining the skills to be able to manage them
is really important because unlike regular stress,
microstress kind of flies under the radar. Our brain
doesn't detect them and so it doesn't respond in the
normal way of fight or flight with major stresses. And
so they're allowed to build up and it has all kinds of
negative impacts. As I was reading the article, it was
really interesting. Even the food that we eat when we
have this microstress is not metabolised the same way.
If you're having a dinner in a stressful situation, you
will actually add, I think it said, 110 calories to the
meal just because. So think of you're going on a first
date. For those of you who are out there, it's like if
you go on a lot of first dates and go out to dinner,
you're going to gain weight. It's just going to happen.
So we actually have to be aware. And what Lyndsey is
giving us is so great, is a tool to continually do that
if we need to do it, but also recognise that we cause
microstresses. To me, that's funny. I was actually
speaking in San. Diego on the stage and I'm high energy
and some people get a little freaked out by that.
Lyndsey, I mean, you've been through rapport, it's
pretty intense, right? And some people love it. But
there was a lady on the front row during part of my
presentation goes, you are stressing me out. I said, I
am sorry, I'm stressing out. And she had fun, we had fun
with it. But have you ever had a situation where
somebody is, well, I'm going to share a situation. Like,
my wife is frustrated with me and so she says something
and a frustrated and I say, stop yelling at me, or I'm
yelling back, or I'm stressed back and we are causing
stress on each other all the time. So instead of one of
the things I try to do, and I've been really practising
this, if I'm frustrated by something that somebody else
is saying, I do not return that frustration in my
response. I actually have to practise in my own mind,
just taking a breath and let go. And remember, I love
this person. Let me show that in how I respond, even
though I'm feeling that stress, because I don't want to
create that ripple effect going forward, because that's
something I can very easily do. And I'm going to share
one more idea. So I have a client that I'm coaching,
Lyndsey, and I'd love to hear your thoughts on this. And
he is so dedicated, so company man. He's not married, he
doesn't have any children. His whole life is the job and
he's a regional manager and he feels anxiety all the
time. Why? Because his entire thought is about work, is
about his team, is about the problems, is about what
other people at work think about him, about the changes
that are happening. His whole world is work and so that
actually builds up stress and anxiety. And so one of my
suggestions to him was you need to be involved in
because he's active in his church, you need to be going
out more with your church, you need to find he loves
gardening, get together with people who do gardening,
find something outside. And he says, Well, I don't want
to spend any money. There are organisations, there are
groups, there are Facebook pages that you can just go
and find like minded people to talk about things that
don't have to do with work. People can cause stress, but
people can also help you to relax. And so being around
other people, whether you're exercising together or
you're part of a group of like minded people, that helps
take your mind off of some of those things that might
normally cause stress. Thoughts on that?

Lyndsey Yeah, I love what you told them and I'm still thinking
about how the more I let go, the more weight I might
lose and be even healthier. But that was a good one.

Spencer Spencer it even changes how we metabolise healthy food
apparently it turns it into, I didn't even realise that
so good food that you eat when you're stressed,
actually, your body is interpreting it as bad food. And
I didn't even know our minds could do that, but
apparently they can. And that's, based on some of this
research from this article, just blew my mind.

Lyndsey That's so hopeful to me. I'm like, we have so much
control over this stuff. It's not controlling us. It's
so cool, right? One thing it makes me think about with
your friend is when we're stressed, it's this natural
human tendency to just put all of our efforts and
attention there and we just keep getting more of the
same, right? Our efforts are on the stress and we get
more stress and it's so counterintuitive. But sometimes
I'll tell myself, like, all right, I'm just going to go
enjoy my kids and just be with them. Even though there's
a pile high of things to do. Or it's those little teeny
things, like just listening to what a child will say, or
feeling, like the graph on my feet or the feel of the
sheets when I get into bed, like really noticing those
feelings and just letting them wash over you, the stress
washes away. It's so not what I would have ever thought.
But you're totally right. With that balance, bringing
other things in, peaceful things, leaning into those,
suddenly these other problems with work that I'm not
focusing on, I find solutions because I'm attracting
this joyful feeling. Right?

Spencer And you are absolutely doing that and you're also doing
something else, which is you're saying, well, I just
need to put aside that job and spend time with my kids.
What happens sometimes is we are working under that
stress and we actually are less and less effective. So
we may be working more and more and more, but our brains
aren't working. We're not even aware of it. Our ability
to think clearly is diminished. And so we are working
longer hours to get less and less done. And just by
taking that break, by focusing on something else, we're
actually replenishing our brain power, our energy, so
that when we do come back to the problem, we have more
energy, more clarity, more focus to get it done in less
time anyway. So it's not even effective to work longer.
Stop that. Come back. You'll get more done in less time
because you have felt the grass on your feet and you
will be replenished.

Lyndsey You need to do your little dancing. That is amazing.
That has taken so.

Spencer That was a little different dance, I have to say.

Christian My son is very good at that. One thing he's really,
really good at is time management. And he started this
actually when he was back in high school because he
loves spreadsheets, so he'd make this spreadsheet and he
would say, okay, I've got my time to do this. But he
wouldn't give himself like a ten minute break or a 20
minutes break. He would give himself like a two hour
break or something like, okay, I'm going to do this and
then for 2 hours, I'm just going to go play video games
with my friend and we're going to have a great time and
then I'm going to come back to this. So he always made
sure that he gave himself ample time. He's like, oh, I'm
not going to work for an hour and then take 5 minutes
and then study for another 2 hours and then take 10
minutes. No, I'm going to study hard for an hour or two
and then I'm going to take one or 2 hours. And he's
really good at that. I want to come back to something,
Lyndsey, that you said about trusting in yourself. I
find that a really interesting concept. I've done a lot
of interviews for people that's one of the things that
I've done for a living is interview people to capture
their stories, to share their experiences, whether it's
personal or whether it's in a professional setting. And
sometimes they are a little bit unsure of themselves
going in. They're a little nervous about it. And so I
try to reassure them and say, hey, this isn't a test.
It's not a performance. You're not trying to get
nominated for an Oscar here. But the most important
thing is what we're here to talk about is your
experience. And you are the expert of your experience.
You know more about your experience than anybody else,
so you can take comfort in that. I really like this idea
of actually building up this trust in yourself. I can do
this. And so I'm curious how you do that, whether it's
through having the conversation, like, hey, man, I'm
just on the roller coaster of life and I'm just enjoying
this up and down thing or what I was doing with
interviewees. You're trying to comfort them and just
giving them a different perspective that, hey, don't
worry, they'll be on pins and heels. It's totally cool.
And you're among friends here. How did you go about
actually building this trust in yourself to say, hey,
you know what? I got this. It's not easy, but we're
going to get through this and we're going to make it

Lyndsey I love that you value people's stories so much and
pointing that out to them that it's not about an Oscar.
We all have this piece inside of us that I know we've
all felt. You can call it your higher self, this really
brilliant self, smart self, that is who, when we can let
go, right, and we go outside, we let go and go do some
fun things. We can feel those ideas come in,
inspirations come in when we can trust that we're not in
charge of figuring out the whole world, right? The
world, it's been going for so long. It's going to keep
taking care of itself. But that we get to live, we get
to be free, we get to hand the stress off and trust that
if there's something we need to know, that high self of
us I call my high self will let us know and will lead
us. And I tell myself my highest self is always leading
me where I want to go. And I keep finding that. And we
know those feelings and we follow them and there's
really so much less that we have to do than I ever
thought. We're meant to live, Joyfully. We're not meant
to carry these huge weights, these huge burdens. Let it
go. Get it out of your mind. Get it out and walk away
from it. I've been amazed. The things we can let go of.
And then that creates space for the possibility, and
that's what we're talking about, with trusting, trusting
ourself in that open space, following those things, and
we'll get better, bigger places than we even imagined.

Spencer I love that. And I feel like we are built to carry and
accomplish great things, yet when we're holding on to so
much in our mind space, we actually don't have the
energy or the ability to do all those things that we
were meant to do. Because we're holding on to so much
that is not productive is kind of what I interpret it. I
know we're kind of getting towards the end, but I have
some questions from some folks on LinkedIn and I want a
blankenship. I'm just going to read her question here.
Teamwork. So this is the teamwork podcast. And what do
you do when all who are present struggle to try to
become part of the team and are shuffled to the side at
every turn? I'm not really sure about what's going on,
but it sounds like there's two things. People are
struggling individually to feel part of a team, and
secondly, maybe they're being pushed to the side and not
made to feel part of the team. Anything coming up for
either of you in that comment? Can't hear you,

Christian Sorry, I muted myself there. Somebody came in the door
and was making some noise. Anyway, I would start out
with just acknowledging what our good friend Dr Paul
Jenkins says. You're perfectly right to feel what you're
feeling. Don't feel any guilt or anything. Like, why am
I feeling this way? You're feeling that way for a
reason. I don't know what the specifics are there, but I
would start there by saying, hey, it's okay to feel what
you're feeling. But then I would hand over here to the
undisputed queen of microstress over here, Lyndsey, to
give more salient advice. But I think it's important for
everybody to recognise up front that don't beat yourself
over the head. If you're feeling the way you're feeling,
you're feeling that for a reason and you're justified in
those feelings, and then what do you do about that? Is
the next step in the process.

Lyndsey Yeah, I totally agree. I picture this we're going about
in our lives and at our work and there's so much you can
do, right, without the specifics. I picture it like,
have you anyone seen that picture of Moses? Like he's
parting the Red Sea? The sea is shooting up on the sides
and you are walking down the centre and you are focused
on serving and your values and whatever is the very most
important to you and your job. And the things that are
happening on the side, the water shooting up, being
chased behind you, those things will keep happening. And
as you're driven in your focus, if the things that are
happening aren't aligned with you, then that's a whole
other conversation. But that has brought me a lot of
peace because the team, there's so much I can do in my
own power to not take that on, to keep it feeling
positive and a healthy environment.

Spencer I think that it's got to start at the top. There's got
to be awareness that leadership has of the impact that
they have. And I talk about impact all the time. If
leaders are not aware of that, then there needs to be
some help and sometimes there needs to be enough pain.
You talked about pain earlier, Lyndsey. Sometimes
there's pain and people leave the organisation. And if
that doesn't jolt leadership into saying, hey, I need to
take a look at myself and be aware of how I'm bringing
people instead of putting them to the side, making them
feel part of the team. One simple thing a leader can do
is sit down with people and ask them what would help you
to feel more part of this team and to hear from them.
And it just takes care, right? Part of eliminating some
of these microstresses is realises that we all have
difficult lives and management is one of the most noble
professions ever. Why? Because of the impact that we
have, not only on someone's profession, but on their
whole life. People can come to work and be miserable or
they can love it and look forward to it. That's our
responsibility when it comes to team, is to make people
feel like they're part of something and that they're
important and that takes time and connections and to
build on your word, Lyndsey, trust. And that starts at
the top. And when you do that, I think when we just
start treating people like they're important to us and
that we care about them, we want to know what's
important to them so that we can help align their values
to our organisation. If they're not aligned, it might be
a great thing for them to leave, but help them to find
where they are aligned. A couple more comments from just

Christian More thing very quickly on that, spencer, I think that's
great if you're the leader of the team. I gather from
Moana's comment that perhaps she's a member of the team,
maybe not the leader. So what do you do in that instance
where you are a member of a team and you're feeling this
sense of frustration? You don't feel empowered. What can
you do, aside from what you said, Lyndsey, which is kind
of focus on yourself and just take care of yourself and
the things that you can control. But is there an
opportunity? I guess it would really depend on the team
itself, but is there an opportunity to kind of raise a
concern tactfully with the leader? Because sometimes the
leader is not aware. I mean, I've been in that situation
where someone came up and told me something and I'm
like, really? I had no idea that was happening. I didn't
know that was going on. Well, we'll take measures to
correct that and sometimes we're afraid. We're like,
well, what happens if I raise my voice, I raise a
concern? Am I going to lose my job? Am I going to be put
on even less meaningful or more meaningless assignments
because I'm a troublemaker and I'm drama? Those are kind
of things you got to work through as a team member if
you're not the leader.

Spencer I absolutely think that is a problem and I think with
Lyndsey's ideas, that's going to be working on their own
stress, right. And before we go, I want to give us an
example of how to write a shred journal entry, if you
will. But we can only control what we can control. And
some organisations, the trust doesn't exist for them to
address or they just don't feel that comfort. Well, what
choices do you have? You can stay and suffer or talk to
them. There's not a lot of great options. And that's why
I'm saying it's got to start at the top. Or you can hire
Lyndsey, just call her and say, hey, what can I do?

Christian You said there were a couple of other questions.
Spencer, I didn't mean to cut you off there, I'm sorry.

Spencer No, here's a couple of comments. So Mitchell was talking
about your roller coaster comment, Lyndsey. He's
Mitchell Crocker, who says there's nervousness and fear
for some before getting on the roller coaster. Even some
people don't even want to get on it. What would you say
to that?

Lyndsey Yeah, those feelings, who's to say those are bad? It's
kind of a fun feeling, right? The anticipation. Here we
go. And when I'm feeling nervous, I'll be like, Isn't
this a feeling? I got to feel this in life. Wow, where
is it going to take me? I'm not going to die. And then
you go on the roller coaster and it's joyful and crazy
and I love thinking about that, the anticipation.

Spencer Before and then just carla Klein from Quebec, I think
that's where she is, she just says, Great suggestion.
Disconnecting from technology to give ourselves some
space to breathe and rest. So we always appreciate when
our listeners comment live and sorry, I didn't get those
a little more timely. So we're run out of time.
Christian, I would love to hear an example of just I
know you shared how you did it, but what can we do to
use this methodology to just let go of that stress? How
do we begin to journal? What do we do?

Lyndsey I can tell you super quickly, get out a piece of paper.
If you want the black book that has the prompts that
have been proven to work, you can use that or paper and
ask yourself, what am I avoiding right now? What am I
pushing away? What am I fearing? And something will come
up. Sometimes we even do this live on podcast. We won't
today. And then just you set the timer for 10 minutes
and you free. Write. There's absolutely no judgement, no
spelling. Just write. Let it all flow. Get it out of
your mind, scribble it out. All the things that you're
scared of, that you feel like maybe you shouldn't say.
Anything that comes up. Your mind will know what needs
to be said, right? Trusting yourself again. And a lot of
people say they're shocked. How much is already on the
surface ready to be said. You get it all out when your
timer beeps after 10 minutes. You breathe deeply. You
trust that your mind is letting go. Your body, your
heart are letting go. And you tear it into teeny little
pieces and you breathe and you throw it all away and you
walk away. And you trust that that is processing and is
done and that you've let go. And you will feel the grip
of that stress and that experience loosen. Because the
fear is what has the tension, the pressure, the stress.
That is what makes stress so heavy. The pushing, the
pressure, the fear, the not looking at it when you free
that there is nothing there anymore except lightness and

Christian Well, Lyndsey, it sounds to me like we've just scratched
the surface on things that people can do and ways that
you can help them to overcome these stresses and really
find this balanced, joyful life. If people want to learn
more, they want to connect with you to figure out what
they should be doing or how you might be able to help
them. What's the best way for them to reach out and
contact you?

Lyndsey Yeah, just cheque out Lyndsey Vlyndseyv.com or Lyndsey V
on social media and love to connect. Come into
businesses and we go to powerful places.

Christian And Spencer, you do so much work with teams. You've done
it for decades, helping teams improve their performance.
If people want to learn how they can help their teams
become high performing teams, what's the best way for
them to connect with you?

Spencer Just reach out to me on LinkedIn. Say hi. All right,
Christian. No, don't go without telling them how.

Christian They get a hold of recon.

Spencer That's a way to shred through Rakonto.

Christian Yeah. For someone like me who doesn't like to write,
maybe I could just record all my frustrations and then
delete it. I don't know. Maybe I'll give that a shot.
I'll try that. But I'm happy to connect with anybody.
Reach out to me on LinkedIn, just look up Christian
Napier I'd be honoured to connect with you all. So,
listeners, viewers, thank you so much for your
participation today. Please like and subscribe to our
podcast. We'll catch you soon. Lyndsey, thank you so

Lyndsey Thank you.

Spencer Thanks, Lyndsey.
-------------- --------------------------------------------------------

Microstress & Team Performance
Broadcast by