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Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Realism...Or Negative Thinking?

I was having a coaching session with a client on the phone the other day while I was at home trying to recuperate from two whirlwind weeks in California attending the WITI Women and Technology Summit and meeting with clients and colleagues. She's a new employee trying to establish herself as a vital part of her new team, but she's having trouble dealing with one of her teammates.

"Every new idea that gets brought to the table is shot down by her," my client said. "We're facing some issues that demand solutions. We've had several meetings and are no closer to resolving anything. It's so frustrating!"

That's a tough one. We've all known our fair share of "Debbie Downer" types; they always something negative to say, always want to poke holes in our ideas, always playing "devil's advocate."

But are they being pessimists...or realists?

I found a great article on this subject on The Wall Street Journal website:

Tips on Finding Your Way Out of Negative Thinking at Work by Kayleen Schaefer

In this article, Ms. Schaefer likens these people to the office Eeyore :) and she give some great tips on how to alter your way of thinking without sacrificing your personality or completely refraining from offering a differing opinion.

After all, sometimes it's the devil's advocate or the hole-poker who keeps us from making major missteps at work. It's important to balance being positive with challenging your team and your company to strive for greatness and profitability.

Read the entire article here.

I've already forwarded this article to my client, and hopefully, she'll do the same to her co-worker!

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