Maybe you're a little "hangry."
Maybe someone said something triggering.
Maybe you spilled your morning coffee which seemed to have set off a series of minor unfortunate events that turned one bad moment into a bad day- extra traffic on the interstate, forgetting to take the meat out of the freezer for dinner, the formatting on your word processor just won't do what you want. You know what I mean. Those days we think "Are you serious? What else could go wrong today?!"
Hopefully that incites a little giggle or grin because if we're honest, we all have bad days or moments. By utilizing Insights Discovery's language of color (where each color represents one of four different personality types) we can begin thinking and talking about our effective and ineffective behaviors in an honest and light-hearted way.
After reading the chart above, do you recognize yourself in any of the colors on a good day? What about on your bad days? What would those who know you well say?
Using this language and chart to discuss these questions honestly with your team (or even those at home) gives permission, provides a framework, and creates a trusting environment where everyone can provide feedback when those bad day behaviors show up. In my experience while working with others, it has played out like this- instead of tip-toeing around each other or being overly direct when bad day behavior comes up, we can address it with jokes and smiles. And when needed, we provided additional support to help that person shift into their good day behaviors. This support often came with the question, "What do you need from me?"
Whatever brought about your "Bad Day" behaviors, if we want to be effective in our relationships, work, and influence, it's important to have self-awareness of what they are, when they tend to show up, and what we can do to shift into our "Good Day" behaviors. To say "Sorry, I'm just having a bad day" isn't always enough. While it can explain to someone why you reacted poorly (which is good communication), it shouldn't be the scapegoat that allows us to continue the poor behavior. Effective leaders lead by influence, and, how are we influencing those around us when we allow ourselves the ease and satisfaction of staying in ineffective behaviors? What does it model to them when they have their bad days or moments?
So, when I find someone pointing out my less-than-helpful behaviors, I ask myself a few questions:
Is this how I want to be known or characterized?
How can I recognize this behavior myself? (What are the physical cues? Is there a certain person or topic that tends to trigger the behavior? Is there a pattern of behaviors I tend to follow?)
What plan, action, or practice can I have in my back pocket to help me shift out of the bad day behavior when I recognize it creeping up? Here are some examples:
Refrain from responding right away- Go on a walk, take a deep breath, move to a different task with the intention of coming back to the triggering situation
Leverage the other Insights Discovery color energies- What colors could you dial up/down to move out of your bad day behavior?
Seek support- Enlist someone to provide feedback about your behavior, make a request for something you might be lacking (information, suggestions, emotional support/connection, resources), get a coach
Communicate- Be transparent about your bad day behaviors as they come up and communicate what you're doing about them. If your bad day behavior is related to a lack of response or communication, provide the information that is being sought or communicate what it is you are still working through and commit to a day/time to provide the information
Reflect- Journal, pray, check in with any personal or team purpose statements, assess the cost if you were to behave poorly, analyze the importance of the upset in the grand scheme of things, determine if there may be something deeper at play that may need to be addressed
Next time you're having a bad day, what will you do?
To learn more about transforming your effectiveness with the Insights Discovery personality profile and color energies, click here. If you want to talk more about working towards behavioral change, let's talk!