There is a person or many people who look up to you and take your cue as to how to handle the issues of life. They learn from you. You are a mentor. We all know that with life comes challenges and opportunities. Handling those challenges not only allows you to grow as a leader and as a person, but also can assist others in handling similar situations as you lead by example. Leaders identify opportunities in the midst of a crisis.

A companion of challenges and leadership is often anxiety. It’s that nagging feeling spinning cycles around in the battlefield of our minds. Something is bothering us, but we just can’t put our finger on it. It’s that unnamed emotion that is signaling a concern. We know that if we can identify it and isolate it, we can get control of it and solve the problem. Learning how to recognize this feeling is the first step to identifying it. Training ourselves to face this feeling will lead us to taking control of it.Keep it simple: control what you can control.

One way to do this is to make a list of the situations, concerns or challenges that are triggering the anxiety. Take a moment to write down some of the top issues you’re facing. You’ll notice that some of your stressors are events that happen to you while others seem to originate from within. It may be an event, or something somebody said, or even something you saw. Once identified, we can begin to confront the challenge and start to solve the problem. As we consider solutions, we should be careful to not limit our options for success. So many times, we have heard people put problems into a solution set of either/or. 

The good news is that we have the ability to control our thoughts and actions. Sometimes fears, attitudes and expectations have been our companions for so long that it often takes some effort to change them. Be patient. Recognize that you are experiencing a concern. Try to identify it. Then think through your options, remembering that sometimes the very best solution is found with both/and rather than either/or. Anxiety is contagious. Others can sense it in you just as you can feel it in others. When you begin identifying and controlling anxiety, you will learn how to handle it and others around you also will see you leading by example.


Control the controllables.