Getting down and dirty

I haven’t got to do this recently but today I went out to take some job pictures with the crew. This, despite my hatred for driving in Portland is one of my favorite things to do. Constantly being under houses and on your belly in the water and mud is not at all a fun job. It is cold, damp, wet and generally icky. I don’t like any of that. What I do like though is watching the crews work. When I show up to a job to take pictures it is almost always the same routine. I look for our truck in front of a customers house and park near to them.

I take pictures of the truck in front of the houses (I like this because most of the houses are these great expensive and wonderful pristine houses and yet they have these awful spaces under their home they were never aware of) . After this, I find the crew and check in. Once all is said and I have suited up if I am going into the crawlspace is where the fun starts. The crews tell me about the project and what they have done so far. They tell me about unique challenges to the jobs and how they plan to fix it. Then I get to watch them. I listen to them chit chat and banter and laugh no matter how wet and dark and gross a crawlspace may be. They include me in their banter and ask about the office and general how are things. I feel pride in our company, and their dedication to a job well done every time I go to the job site. 20160404_130443.jpg


Sometimes life feels too big, remember its all little things

This week has felt very overwhelming to me for unknown reasons. There seems an endless string of things to do and one fail after the other. Everything has been irritating despite the fact the week has been full of non issues that I have trumped up and let get under my skin. So this morning I am huffy and feeling ready to hide and grump. I’m hostile and cranky and fighting with my coworkers for no reason other than I want to be angry (although I outwardly don’t think I want to be angry). Then a light switch. I don’t want to be angry, I hate when my coworkers are upset especially if I feel like I am the source of some of that animosity. I had to stop and take a minute, slow myself down. What was so big? What really had to get done and what was I so stressed out about?

We as a company have been very busy this week with the rains, the busy environment has made it feel hectic in the office. Being busy as a business is good, not only for us as a company but I genuinely feel good about what we as a company do and that we are truly helping our customers lead healthier lives and save money. This hectic business should have made me feel super excited this week, not cranky. As for the mountain of things I had to get done, when I actually sat down to evaluate, the list was just simple things and not near as many as I thought there were. At the time they all seemed urgent but they were not. No one suffered or was adversely affected because I did not get that one thing done.

All week I have little trivial things become mountains in my mind that have affected my mood which then affects the moods and attitudes of those around me. I made my own issues out of nothing…ugh. I can guarantee I am not the only person who has fallen victim to this trap. So many times we let small issues twist us up and let our perception of a situation become bigger and scarier than the actual situation really is. We create stress and tension needlessly. So how do we stop ourselves?

Realizing that we can only accomplish one task at a time is a start. Now I am in no way saying that people do not multi-tasks. You can have more than one thing in the works at a time, but keep in mind you can only complete one thing at a time. When you feel like you have a mountain of things in front of you, prioritize your list. Are their items on the list that have to be completed in a sequence? For some items, can you work them in stages? (I always think about laundry, starting the washer before I go do dishes and then coming back…etc). It makes no sense to stress and obsess about things you can’t accomplish yet. When we break things down to their small components life seems much more manageable. Put one foot in front of the other, take tasks one step at a time.

Don’t let you be the one that trips you up.