Selling may seem like a walk in the park at first until you find yourself actually going through the task of having to get leads or close a deal. We all regulate stress every day. Stress is a natural and important part of life, but when left unmanaged, it can damper an individual’s productivity and ruin opportunities. Some people are better than others at dealing with negative emotions that come to fruition from the demanding environment of sales, which means that they are skills that can be taught.
Sales teams that don’t address workplace stress are at a huge disadvantage. It is in an organization’s best interest to teach stress management techniques because a sales team’s performance, productivity, and effectiveness are directly proportional to its success. Effective stress techniques have been proven to improve:
- Patience towards frustration
The Benefits of Learning Proper Stress Management Skills
Learning and implementing stress management techniques to help regulate our physiological responses yields amazing benefits to an individual’s personal and professional life. It’s important to understand how these techniques impact our bodies.
Effective management of stress helps to:
- Lower your heart rate
- Decrease blood pressure
- Regulate and slow breathing
- Decrease stress hormones
- Increase blood flow
- Ease muscle tension
These techniques are easy enough to learn and understand but should be practiced daily for the best results. Here are 5 smart techniques to help manage sales stress and increase performance.
Practice Tactical Breathing
Breath control is a time-honored technique. When you’re in the middle of a sales call and before your sales calls, it may not seem important, but you should make sure that you are breathing properly. Tactical breathing (box breathing or 4×4 breathing) is a technique used by personnel in the armed forces, firefighters, and police to help manage stress on the spot during high-risk situations.
While our everyday stress during sales calls and client meetings is probably not as dramatic, the weight of it is ours and ours alone to deal with. If you find yourself holding your breath or taking shallow breaths, it could be a sign that you’re too upset or nervous. Customers can likely hear that in your voice or may even hear the breathing, which may turn them off and cause them to hang up.
Regulate your breath by practicing the following technique:
- Breathe in through your nose to the count of 4
- Hold your breath to the count of 4
- Breathe out through your mouth to the count of 4
- Hold your breath to the count of 4
- Repeat until you feel your mind and body relax
Vary this technique by breathing in to the count of 4 and out to the count of 7, or what feels comfortable for your situation. It’s important to breathe from your diaphragm and feel it contract and expand.
Repeat A Motivational Mantra
A mantra is a word, sound, slogan, or statement that is repeated out loud to help with concentration and other forms of meditation. It can be one of the quickest ways to calm down and clear your mind. A mantra can be a simple word like “breath”, repeating something you are grateful for, or a phrase such as “do your best”. Mantras work by helping to anchor your thoughts in the reality of the moment and increase your presence of mind.
Managing sales stress through a motivational mantra will help you keep calm, remain inspired, and be ready to handle whatever the day throws your way. Whether it’s dealing with cold calls, negotiating with difficult clients or coworkers, use these examples or make up your own to help fill your mind with positivity and boost encouragement:
- “Show Up”
- “This Too Shall Pass”
- “Be Humble”
- “With Change Comes Opportunity”
- “Trust the Process”
- “You Only Fail When You Stop Trying”
- “No means not yet”
- “Progress is a process”
Mantras are relative. Everyone has different issues that they deal with or goals they would like to achieve and the right mantra can reflect that. The best words, sounds, and phrases will help serve your specific situation and are relative to your experiences.
Exercise is a timeless and proven method to ease tension and improve your mental attitude. If you’re looking to get a quick boost of energy, it might help to take a quick walk around the block during your lunch break, walk a few flights of stairs, or simply take time off from your desk to stand up, stretch, and roll your head around a few times. Studies have shown that nature walks have a profound effect on increasing overall well-being and ease bouts of depression.
Ease Your Mind Through Music
Calming music and sound therapy have been proven to ease minds and reduce tension. Choosing the right music has a profound effect on how your mind responds to the environment around it. In addition to calming your nerves, the right music can help you get into a momentum of productivity and focus that can help when you’re trying to get important spreadsheets finished or when you’re drafting plans or writing papers. In our hyper-connected, digital world music can help reduce stress and improve productivity. You can log on to Spotify and create your own playlist of 10 of the most soothing songs you know, or listen to a few of the below playlists to get you started.
Playlists to Help Manage Sales Stress
- “ Neuroscience Says Listening to This Song Reduces Anxiety by Up to 65 Percent”
- “Soothing Jazz Playlist”
- “Stress Relief Songs: Music That Reduces Anxiety”
Stay Calm To Close Deals
While some stress is good and can even be motivating, it can also be extremely detrimental to closing sales deals and can have a damaging impact on your sales team if left unmanaged. The very nature of work that a salesperson does is typically in a high-stress environment. Coping with stress is a skill and should be practiced. Developing coping mechanisms is one of the most important life-skills. By learning to manage sales stress you will improve your sales numbers and meet your quotas.
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