Value Adds in This Article (and Pt.1):

  •  Learn to birth opportunity from any difficult time 
  •  Leadership badge: how to handle adversity
  •  Move from trial to turning point

Must Reads to Partner With:

When Life Feels Unbearable with CALM Unattainable 

TGIM readers and leaders. Leaders ARE readers by the way. I’m not sure how you’re planning to spend the next 7 days but my wife and I are pressing the gas on serving and giving. As much as we can. Now, in todays age of spending most of your time trying to ensure the ‘money’ piece is taken care of and, matters of everyday life, it’s easy to forget about serving others. ALWAYS REMEMBER: give more to live more. 

“I believe anyone can use the following principles to up their decision making accuracy during times of high stress.”

Apparently, I’m good in a pickle. Perhaps, but more appropriately I’ve just developed the skills having been in so many. Part 2 of how to handle a crisis deals with palatable, actionable items I use whenever a tornado blows in. I believe anyone can use the following principles to up their decision making accuracy during times of high stress. 

Levels of crisis

Types of Crisis 911 or 311?

It’s important to note that there are different types of crisis that therefore demand different levels of action. I have deemed these to be (in order of importance):

  1. Life Threatening Crisis – 911
  2. Health Crisis – 711
  3. Financial & OR Business Crisis – 511
  4. Family Crisis – 511 (non life/health)
  5. Everyday Crisis (car, friendships, etc) – 311

You’ll notice both Family and Business/Financial crisis’s are 511 as one can often directly affect the other and both can come with similar heights of emotion. Common family crisis’s I would categorize as: marriage crisis, family relationship crisis, household/home/living conditions crisis etc. Do you have a crisis leadership team in place? For business? For family?? Who’s your ICE team (In Case of Emergency) listed in your phone book? You write out your shopping list right? Why not an action plan/system for the most important moments of your life. Get on it lightworkers. 

CALM – My Top 4 ‘GO TO’ Actions During Crisis 

Contrary to what you may think, you have MUCH more time than you think you do during times of elevated anxiety. Developing this simple system has proven that to me. I’d like to share with you my ‘fire out four’ and they’re wrapped in the acronym CALM. They have served me well over the years and I recently put a number of them into practice when my first Son came out hardly alive next to my wife and I in the OR, spending the first two weeks of his life in NICU.

Right from my early days of playing sport provincially, I knew that I had to develop a mental system for remaining somewhat calm during times of high stress. Naturally it has changed over the years to remain specific/relevant but memorizing the CALM system has been key to giving me a focal anchor which has time and time again denied panic an early foothold. Panic can often be the absence of focus on CALM thoughts and it’s ultimately the experience of escalating states of HIGH adrenaline controlled by the CNS. This is the fight or flight response system that you may know of and it’s typically only needed in extremely rare instances. The good news is that you can program it to a large degree. I did and you can too.

We have allowed ourselves to become a reactionary culture, too often becoming  ‘triggered’ far too easily. As leaders, people look to us to help them develop their FULL potential. Today, I see it as a moral responsibility and a problem that NEEDS priority attention.

Here we go:  

1. C – Categorize (the Crisis)

I have found that using the 911 to 311 system can be a simple way of not allowing fight or flight to kick in if it’s not needed. Use three deep breaths to take time to think and find the category for your situation. If it’s not 1 or 2 above, you have time! Create your own system, memorize it.

2. A – Action (now or soon)

Whatever action you take, lead with your VALUES and GOALS out front. In leadership, action is watched by your people and it’s watched without you knowing most of the time. I’m talking about non life threatening crisis’s. What action do I need to take to remedy or stabilize this situation? What are my CORE values? What’s my desired outcome? Do I have time to assemble my crisis team?

3. L – Leverage (others)

It’s only ever really types 1 or 2 that may need you to act quickly alone. Every other crisis you can generally take the time to seek counsel from those selected in your corner. DO NOT do what I did for too many years and not seek the advice of trusted mentors. Outside perspective is SO often key to making the right decision for your situation and don’t feel you have to give someone/something an answer straight away. You don’t.

4. M – Meditate (including prayer)

Meditation has allowed so many incredible things into my life. Meditate daily to regain control of your peace. Group meditation can be especially powerful in leveraging quantum energies to influence an outcome too. In fact it’s heavily proven. Is meditation the same as prayer? I don’t believe so. Whilst prayer can (and should) be used in quiet states of mind, and group prayer can also be EXTREMELY powerful, I have found the two to be different. Meditate morning and evening for ten minutes (at LEAST) each time on subjects such as Peace, Abundance, Calm etc. Here’s a great 6 minute guided meditation from Deepak that I often use on the go

There you have it lightworkers. Let me know your thoughts, I value them and HOPE this adds value to YOU. It’s saved me time and time again. Although my wife and I run two companies, I VERY seldom experience states of high stress and I can attribute this largely in part to using the CALM system. Try it, let me know how you get on.

With abundance,


PS. email me feedback anytime. I might just need it

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