This can happen to anyone.
You sit down at your desk to work and you notice that there is a piñata full of bees hanging above your head. How did it get there? Where did it come from? These questions are not important. The only important question is: how are you going to get all of your work done?
Channel your adrenaline
Having a piñata full of bees precariously positioned above your head will definitely increase your heart rate and give you a rush of adrenaline and energy. You can use this to your advantage! You need to learn how to focus that energy boost into accomplishing your tasks.
The fear of being stung by bees is a natural stimulant that produces physical effects in your body similar to caffeine and nicotine, without the detrimental side effects. Bee terror is much healthier than coffee or cigarettes because there is no chance of addiction. Who needs coffee when you have bees?
Just because you have a piñata full of bees hanging above your head, that doesn’t mean that the bees are your enemies. You hear their buzzing and it sounds ominous because you cannot understand their bee language. You may be thinking that their indecipherable buzzing is them plotting against you. Reframe that negativity into positivity.
Think of the bees as your friends. Those bees are above your head buzzing words of encouragement! They want to help you complete all of your tasks on time. Every time you hear “buzz buzz” coming from the piñata, it means “you can do it!” Once you reframe your thinking into the positive, it becomes so much easier to complete your work (such as answering complaint emails). After all, you have a bunch of yellow and black striped cheerleaders cheering you on so there is nothing you cannot accomplish!
Listen to some music
Even once you reframe the bee buzzing into positive words of encouragement, the buzzing may get annoying. Bees do not have the best singing voices, so it understandable that you may not want to listen to them all day. They may produce honey, but their sounds are not honey to the ears. You will find it easier to focus on your work instead of the bees if you do not have to hear the bees.
Put your headphones in and drown out the buzzing with your favorite tunes. Non-lyrical music boosts productivity and can help you focus. But it doesn’t even have to be music, some people focus better when listening to talking such as public radio or stand-up. So whether it is an orchestral symphony or the musings of Jerry Seinfeld, listen to whatever will help you stay on task.
Remember they can’t sting you
Remember, the bees are confined inside the piñata. Unless you grab a stick and start whacking the piñata, the bees will stay safely inside. They will not be able to hurt you because there is a layer of colorful cardboard between you and the bees. Their little bee stingers cannot penetrate the cardboard.
Now, if you do for some reason decide to grab a stick and start whacking the piñata, that may free some or all of the bees. Once the bees are unleashed, they will probably go after you since you are the one holding the stick. It will be very hard to focus on work having sustained multiple bee stings. You may have to outsource your tasks to someone who is not being stung by multiple bees. So don’t poke the piñata. Put the stick down and get back to work.
Notice but don’t dwell
You see the colorful piñata hanging over your head. You know it is filled with bees because you hear their buzzing. It is ok to notice this, in fact, it would be foolish if you didn’t. But there is no reason to dwell on this fact, it will cause you do become unproductive.
Imagine you start dwelling on the piñata. You start worrying whether or not the string it is hanging on is strong enough to support the bees. You start thinking about the unfortunate possibility that the string may break, causing the piñata to land on your head and releasing a storm of irritated bees into your face. Will all of your worrying make the string any stronger? No. Will all of your worrying slow your non-bee related workflow? Yes. So don’t dwell on it!
Take a break
Even the most strong willed people cannot last a whole day with a piñata full of bees hanging above them. Too much time spent under stress can cause you to start making errors such as spelling mistakes. It is absolutely ok, and even beneficial, to take a break. The bees will miss you, but they will understand. Get up from your desk and step away from the buzzing piñata. Go take a walk or grab something to eat or drink. Socialize with your coworkers and chat about non-bee related topics. Come back with a renewed strength to face the bees.
Few people will actually have to deal with the problem of having a piñata full of bees hanging above them while they work. But everyone can relate to having something hanging above their head that causes them anxiety and worry. Learning to channel that anxiety into positivity is the difference between having a productive versus an unproductive day.