Years back, I almost got fired from my job because my performance at work had been underwhelming and dismal. I found myself dragging myself out of bed every morning and dreading every single day I had to work.
Thankfully, my boss didn’t throw me out when I messed up one of the accounts I was handling! Knowing that I wasn’t usually that way, she personally came to me and convinced me to get some professional help.
Going to therapy was one of the best decisions I ever made for myself. However, therapy isn’t only limited to people going through a rough patch – therapy is for everybody! Here are some ways how therapy can make everyone better in their career.
- Strong Collaborative and Interpersonal Skills
- Better Communication Skills
- Increased Productivity
- Sharper Decision-Making Skills
- Building Sustainable Work Habits
- Setting Values and Goals
Strong Collaborative and Interpersonal Skills
What makes therapy great and effective is that it helps me understand myself. Weekly sessions with my therapist, who is a gentle and kind person in his mid-40s, shed light on how I build personal relationships.
I was able to understand the roles I often played in a team, as well as the roles I best identify with and the roles that cause me stress. Aside from that, I was also made aware of other people’s behaviors which set me off and which make me feel supported.
With these, I am able to gain control of how I control my reactions to certain situations which involve teamwork and group dynamics. While I may not be able to control the people I work with and the situations I am caught in, I can always soften the blow by anticipating my reactions.
I can say that after therapy, I became better at dealing with my colleagues, my superiors, and even our clients. However, it did not come overnight. Developing a collaborative spirit, like any other skill, takes some time.
Controlling the Short Fuse
I knew that therapy helped me because instead of getting mad at what one of my coworkers told me, I excused myself and went to the break room to take some short deep breaths.
Oftentimes, I choose not to get upset over the menial things, but sometimes, triggers are inevitable.
My therapist taught me that this is okay and that getting triggered is a normal response.
Better Communication Skills
Therapy sessions taught me a great deal about my strengths and weaknesses. I’ve found out that one of my greatest weaknesses at work was not being able to communicate well. Thus, it’s been a constant source of my stress and unproductivity.
When I was starting out with therapy, one of the questions I found difficult to answer was “What do you really want?” I had a hard time asserting what I wanted, but not because I did not know what I wanted. It was because I had poor communication skills.
Going to therapy has helped me regain my lost self-esteem around people. I also slowly started building my confidence into communicating what I wanted and needed.
Although my boss had never considered my communication skills to be mediocre, I saw that I definitely had room for improvement.
Through constantly communicating with my therapist, I was able to translate those skills in the workplace.
The best part about this was my boss and everyone around me noticed that I had become more assertive and eloquent about my opinions and views when it came to working, something which our office culture encourages.
Before I underwent therapy, I felt like a robot clocking in and out of work to no end. I constantly beat myself up because of the things that I was not able to do, yet I kept pushing myself to do them in an unhealthy way.
Through therapy, I was also able to learn the working style which fits my personality best, as well as the tasks that spark creativity and enthusiasm in me. With this, I am able to prioritize tasks and do work that I actually enjoy.
I also learned tips on how to get myself to be more productive, such as keeping a clutter-free desk, taking a ten-minute break for every hour, and starting my day with the most difficult or challenging task.
Staying in the Zone
As I’ve gotten to know myself better over a year of therapy, I am aware of the distractions that tend to zone me out while at work.
Everyone experiences intrusive thoughts and worries, right? Therapy can help you deal with those thoughts so you can stay in the zone and fully functioning at work.
Moreover, therapy helps in building a renewed sense of hope and fulfillment. It gets you out of bed and start a new day with a big smile on your face, ready to take on any challenge at work.
Sharper Decision-Making Skills
I used to be a bummer when it came to making decisions. I seldom trusted myself and never held myself accountable for big decisions at work because I did not trust myself.
My indecisiveness almost cost me my job, something which I did not realize until I had long talks with my therapist. I told my therapist that I had not been this way before, to which he responded through a series of open and honest sessions on my self-esteem and confidence.
As soon as I was able to acknowledge my weakness and knew the root of my behavior and outlook in life, I was able to rebuild self-trust and self-esteem. I reminded myself that I was worth listening to and that my decisions were sound and logical.
Peace of Mind
Now, when I am caught with the dilemma of having to decide on things, I no longer dwell too much on my decisions and cause unnecessary stress.
I try to stay confident and move along because, through therapy, I was able to re-learn that mistakes are normal and that it is not healthy to beat yourself up for something that you cannot undo.
Building Sustainable Work Habits
Another factor that led to my increased productivity was developing sustainable work habits. These habits helped prevent me from going through another episode where I found no joy in my life and my work.
I started my career as a wide-eyed mid-20’s graduate filled with energy and hope, but that person slowly turned into a burnt-out worker because of unhealthy work habits.
These included overworking and the lack of boundaries over personal life and work. By working with my therapist to unpack my work habits, I was able to overcome those by thinking that if I want to become a useful member of the organization, I must stay healthy.
Avoiding Burn Out
Now, I enjoy a little bit of downtime and no longer feel guilty about taking a break every once in a while to keep me going.
My therapist was able to convince me to break free from my usual 9-to-5 routine and add a bit of variety to my days.
I feel really happy and more productive at work these days, all thanks to my wonderful therapist and the support and trust I feel from every session.
Setting Values and Goals
It is true when they say that therapy is indeed a life-changing experience – I feel like I am an improved version of myself. As I have strengthened my sense of self through listening and understanding what I have to say during therapy, I started recalibrating my values and goals.
Before starting therapy, my goal was to make it out alive every single day and wait for every single workweek to end. However, by discovering that life had much more to offer, I decided to step out of my comfort zone and see the world with fresh eyes.
This move greatly affected how I perceived my career as a profession and passion. I discovered that through my job, I am working towards my long-term goals and therefore, I must work better and harder.
Large Goals, Small Steps
“Small steps can lead you to large goals” is what my therapist often tells me when I express that I am overwhelmed with the world and the things I want to achieve.
At times I feel small and insignificant, I am reassured that every step of the way counts.
For me, the best part about therapy is that I am able to see the bigger picture, as well as how the small steps I take every day contribute toward that goal.
Therapy is nothing to be afraid of. Sure, going to therapy elicits a lot of negative and unwanted reactions, connotations, and opinions from many other people, but what they fail to see is how therapy can help everyone improve their lives and sense of being.
Now, I am in a better place at the same company and even got a promotion – I’ve come a long way since the time I almost got fired for not holding up well! Today, I am able to meet a lot of people who I am fortunate to help, lead, and inspire the way my boss inspired me.