Hi JohnRichardsII! (I love your name, and felt compelled to type it fully)
I also love your team and all the energy you guys bring to the table. It really creates a safe space for learning and collaboration. Life is hard and keeping it silly can be the very thing that turns a chore into something fun and fulfilling. It is a bit of a Mary Poppins vibe mixed with a “fake it till you make it” mindset. That first smile can cost you a lot, but the consequent one will come naturally.
Honestly, stress can really get you… my tactics to destress are probably based on routine and repetition: Opening my curtains in the morning, having coffee, and listening to a silly song can get me in the zone. Playing a game in between meetings or at lunch can really help me reset. If things get too overwhelming, take a break and come back to it later. The worst thing someone can do for their health is to try to force themselves to do a shore or to answer an upsetting message when their brain is not ready for it.
A tactic that is often overlooked is: actively avoiding giving stressful thoughts center stage. Easier said than done… but trying to compartmentalize them can be the difference between a belly ache and cruising through your day. There is always the possibility for disaster, but that fear can become the disaster you worried about to begin with.
Make Time is a really cool book for tactics to get in the zone and to destress. It is not just another time management book because it is written from the perspective of someone in tech who wants to spend more time with their family and follow their passions (and less time thinking about work). I highly recommend it!