How To Beat Stress
The driver who cuts you off on your commute. That remark your spouse made last evening. The to-do list as long as your arm. The deadlines. The annoying things your coworkers do sometimes.
These little frustrations and others all add up to stress. Not only does stress take its toll on your health and well being but it might also cause you to lash out at a coworker or worse, do something else you’ll regret later.
That’s why it’s important to know how to keep stress in check and one of the best ways is with meditation. All it takes is a little practice. The payoff is greater calmness, a lighter attitude and more happiness in life. Want to try it? Just follow these simple steps:
*Make time to meditate. Set aside a few minutes a day, morning, afternoon or evening. The important thing is to establish a routine.
*Find a quiet place. Eliminate distractions like TV, radio and interruptions. If you play music, pick something soothing.
*Sit comfortably. A chair will work fine. You don’t have to sit cross-legged on the floor. But don’t slouch. Keep your back straight.
*Consciously relax. This isn’t as hard as it sounds. Just close your eyes slightly and let your breath gently rise and fall. Don’t try to control your breath—just let it happen. As you let go, watch your thoughts as they come into your mind, acknowledge them and then let them float away. Adopt the attitude that you don’t have a care in the world and let that feeling wash over you.
*Sink deeper into silence. As you let yourself relax, you’ll feel yourself becoming calmer and quieter. Let it happen as you explore even deeper relaxation.
While you’re trying meditation, why not bring your new-found calmness to your work? Don’t let petty frustrations or annoyances throw you off your game. Keep the big picture–your safety and that of your coworkers–firmly in mind. What’s the point of flying off the handle or simmering with anger? If you have a complaint, express it calmly and constructively and then let it go.
Remember that your coworkers are doing their best, just as you are. Try seeing things from their point of view and you’ll find you have more in common than you think.
Keeping these things in mind, you’ll experience more teamwork, more job satisfaction and more stress-free days. And you can’t beat that.
When You Work With Others…
COOL & CALM IS SMART & SAFE!
*Copyright 2008 Harkins Safety B242
A Monumental Task
Did you know that the four huge statues of presidents carved out of granite at Mt. Rushmore took 14 years to create and in that time, not one occupational fatality occurred?
The spectacular 60-foot-high granite faces of Presidents Washington, Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt and Lincoln were blasted out of the top of a mountain that is 1,000 feet long and 400 feet high. The project started in 1927 and was finished in 1941. The amazing monument cost less than $1 million to create and was paid for by donations and grants from Congress.
The huge monument at Mt. Rushmore grew out of the vision of one man and came into being because he insisted on superb workmanship, safe working conditions and above all, teamwork.
Guton Borglum, the talented sculptor, worked from a plaster model he created in a studio at the site. He carefully calculated distance between key points on his model, then transferred his measurements to the face of the mountain at a ratio of 12 to 1. Borglum showed his drillers precisely where to drill the holes for carefully measured dynamite charges. After most of the workman had gone home he blasted the excess stone into the valley below.
Even though the safety equipment was crude in those days, no one was killed on this project. This was a considerable achievement when compared to the 11 fatalities on the Golden Gate Bridge and 14 on the Empire State Building. The credit goes to teamwork.
Whether the project is large or small, teamwork is essential.
Communication is key. You need to know who’s doing what job and when and how they’re doing it. Stay aware of your coworkers and stay in touch.
Pull together. We all depend on others to help us get the job done. Work with your coworkers. Let them know you’re a team and you’ll be able to count on them when you need some help. Work for the good of the whole crew.
Teamwork—Working Together For Safety
*Copyright 2002 Harkins Safety B152
If the sight of jets thundering through the skies at 600 mph while performing intricate aerial maneuvers in tight formation quickens your pulse, chances are you’re witnessing one of the most spectacular feats of flying ever staged.
You’re watching the U.S. Navy Blue Angels.
A Blue Angels air show features perfectly timed, perfectly choreographed precision flying, such as the Four-Plane Diamond Formation. This magnificent event is accented with two solo pilots in stunning aerial acrobatics. A solo vertical roll can reach as high as 15,000 feet. In the Sneak pass, the pilot streaks by at just 50 feet above the ground. But the pinnacle of precision flying comes when the Blue Angels perform the intricate maneuvers of the renowned Six-Jet Delta Formation while locked together as one beautifully functioning unit.
True it takes years of training, but teamwork is the key.
What does it take to be a Blue Angel? Each year, a total of 16 officers volunteer, three tactical pilots, two support officers and one Marine pilot are selected to relieve departing members. The Blue Angels Commanding Officer, the Boss must have at least 3,000 tactical jet-fighting hours and experience commanding a squadron. Other members must have a minimum of 1,250 tactical jet-fighter hours. The team trains and performs together for maximum precision and safety.
The Blue Angels rely on safety and teamwork for every demonstration. Safety is just as important to you and it also depends on teamwork. Whether you’re flying in formation or operating a forklift, safety is no accident-it requires skill and training and cooperation.
*Look out for the other guy or gal. Always stay aware of who’s working around you and what they’re doing. If you see a coworker attempting an unsafe act, say something.
*Offer help when you can. Lending a hand makes the work easier and safer, so help others whenever possible. For safety’s sake, ask for help when you need it, too.
*Stay cool. Frustrations can arise when working with others, but don’t let anger prod you into doing something dangerous. Remember, you’re a professional. What would happen if one of the Blue Angels lost his cool? The consequences for you can be just as deadly.
The Blue Angels perform nearly 70 air shows at 34 locations to the delight of more than 17 million amazed spectators. Since they started in 1946, that’s more than 381 million fans. When you work safely every day, you come home to the most important fans of all-your family.
SAFETY Is No Accident
Copyright 2006 Harkins Safety B-177
Let’s Pull Together
Can you think of a contest that requires participants to exert all their strength for an hour or more? Although most athletic events have time-outs, the tug-of-war is a non-stop test of strength and endurance. And every year, the small central California town of Tuolumne proclaims the best tug-of-war champions.
Each team has six members. The pulling is done on a wooden frame fitted with cleats, against which the athletes brace their feet. The last person on each team wears a special steel-and-leather belt weighing 70 pounds that guides a 2 inch diameter pulling rope around the body of the anchorman.
The contests are grueling tests of strength and stamina. A time record was set in 1960 when two teams tugged for an hour and 15 minutes before one of the teams won.
Even more surprising, several years earlier a tug-of-war in India went on for 2 hours and 41 minutes before a team won.
The coordinated teamwork of the six husky athletes all pulling together is the key to winning in this unusual sport.
Most jobs today don’t require that kind of brute strength, but that kind of teamwork and coordination are essential for safety. We need to help each other by signaling our movements in the plant, at the office, in the car, or wherever we work, travel and live. Teamwork requires communication, cooperation and coordination.
The tug-of- war demands intense coordination to keep all members of the team pulling together without any letdown. On the job, we must pull in the same direction without any slips, falls or lapses to get the job done safely. Endurance for us may be more a case of mental alertness than physical exertion, but it’s just as important.
Each of us depends on the specialized skills of other members of our team, but we also need to look out for maintenance crews, repair personnel or outside suppliers who sometimes work “where we all know the ropes.” Even though safety seems like a simple exercise, it depends on everyone’s pulling in the same direction and doing his or her part. The safety of every member of the team depends on every other member.
To prevent accidents, we each have to pull our own share of the load, using approved safety procedures, but we must also look out for others. This kind of coordination means better quality, smoother production and safer working conditions. Let’s work together!
Teamwork Safety Works Better Together
*Copyright 2005 Harkins Safety B196
First In Flight
Did you know that today’s supersonic jet aircraft were made possible by two amateur mechanics who had a hobby that grew into a lifelong do-it-yourself project?
Orville and Wilbur Wright did more than invent the airplane, they discovered the basics of flight. And, they had to create the whole process almost from scratch. Here’s their story.
The Wright brothers opened their now famous bicycle shop in Dayton Ohio, in 1892. The two finished high school but were not trained as engineers. They were, however, both mechanically inclined with sharp analytical minds. They shared what at the time was a barely respectable dream: the possibility of flight. Their serious work in aviation began in 1899 when Wilbur wrote to the Smithsonian for literature.
The two read everything they could find about aeronautics, but were dismayed to learn that so many early experiments with manned flight had made so little progress. Later they wrote, “We saw that the calculations upon which all flying machines had been based were unreliable…After two years of experiments, we cast it all aside and decided to rely entirely upon our own investigations.”
To do that, they built the world’s first wind tunnel in which they tested wing designs and propellers. They couldn’t buy a lightweight engine so they built their own. For two years they built gliders and made a thousand test glides from Big Kill Devil Hill on the shores of North Carolina. Their experience with gliders taught them to be pilots before they risked their lives in a powered flight.
On the morning of December 17, 1903, the first manned, heavier-than-air machine left the ground under its own power, moved forward under control without losing speed, and landed on a point as high as that from which it started. The era of flight had begun.
You don’t have to be an inventor to benefit from the Wright brothers’ success. Every individual needs to be a leader when it comes to safety. Safety rules and safe operating procedures have been spelled out, written down and talked about but they are empty promises if you don’t use them. We have the safety knowledge of the ages at our disposal to protect us. But our safety each day is still up to each of us.
Your job, your future, your life can depend on your own day-to-day awareness of the danger that hides in preventable accidents. Don’t take an untested shortcut just to save a few seconds of time. A safe day yesterday in no protection against a different set of work or traffic conditions today.
Be a leader. Put all of your safety skill and experience to work to protect yourself and others-at home and at work. Know the rules of safety. Take your personal safety into your own hands. Make each day a safe day.
Be A Leader…Follow Safety Rules
*Copyright 2003 Harkins Safety B172