To say sales is stressful would be a laughable understatement.
But sales doesn’t have to be ulcer-inducing. Let’s break down the factors of sales stress (and how to keep it from overtaking your life):
The biggest reason is that, unlike most other professions, your performance can be (and is) easily measured from month to month, quarter to quarter. Unlike, let’s say, an engineer, salespeople’s incomes are directly dependent on their output, which is dependent on a host of factors outside their control.
The uncertainty and instability of income create a world of pressure, uncertainty, and a never-ending funnel that must constantly be replenished with new business.
That’s not to say that sales is a bad role. In fact, it can be life-changing for those who commit themselves to the work and are able to maintain the level-headed mindset required to push through the challenges and get to the finish line.
But unlike professions where stress levels are properly addressed during training, (like medicine, for instance), salespeople are expected to figure out how to manage their stress levels on their own, and many don’t do a great job, burning out, affecting their health, and quitting without having given it a fair shot.
While some degree of stress will always be present in a job as demanding as sales, it shouldn’t feel overwhelming. There are ways you can effectively reduce sales-induced stress without quitting or resorting to unhealthy coping methods.
Here are six highly effective ways to overcome sales stress:
1. Use your time off
Salespeople spend their days glued to their phones and computer screens and are oftentimes nervous to take time off for fear of falling behind or losing an opportunity. As counterintuitive as it sounds, however, taking time off can actually help you excel, allowing you to recharge your batteries, take a step back and assess your situation and goals, and come back feeling refreshed and ready to turn up the tempo. Don’t wear your refusal to use your time off as a badge of honor. Instead, value yourself enough to use your available time off as needed — you’ll be more successful in the long run.
2. Get organized
Sales can pull us in fifty different directions at once, and the resulting chaos can leave us feeling stressed and unable to figure out the next step to take to get things done. This is why organization is so important: an uncluttered inbox can maintain an uncluttered mind, and the same goes for your desk and CRM.
Dooly can help with the latter, allowing you to update Salesforce and take notes in one convenient place, rather than scrolling through dozens of screens trying to find the field you’re looking for. Clean up your workspaces and you’ll have one less thing to be stressed about.
3. Positive self-talk
The way we talk to ourselves matters, and if you’re constantly beating yourself up over your mistakes, then it’s no surprise your stress levels are sky high. Instead of taking your frustration out on yourself, try using empathy. After all, you wouldn’t want someone else insulting you after you’ve made a mistake, so why should you treat yourself worse than the way others treat you?
Replace the negative self-talk with positive self-talk, and you’ll start to see things in a different way. Mistakes will become lessons, and you’ll start to see setbacks not as insurmountable tragedies, but as mere bumps in the road.
4. Exercise regularly (even if it’s light)
If you want to de-stress effectively, there is perhaps no better tool than rest and exercise. While not everybody enjoys exercising, it can make you feel infinitely better, and as everybody knows, there’s a huge body of science tying even light exercise to increased well-being, better mindset, and better health.
Even doing something as simple as taking a walk every single day can make an impact, so if you start to feel stressed, make it a point to get your heart rate up through movement. You’ll almost certainly feel better when you’re done.
5. Look for social support
Independent and tough-minded salespeople tend to want to go it alone, but having people to talk to can help tamp down much of the stress associated with the workplace, whether it’s friends, family, your coworkers, or even a trained therapist.
Studies have shown that simply talking about stressors helps relieve them, which might have something to do with the fact that human beings are social creatures. In any case, don’t be afraid to find support from others. It might sound a bit touchy-feely to some, but if it helps you feel better and close more deals, it’s certainly worth it.
6. Understand that it comes with the job
While there’s certainly no rule that says you have to experience stress when you’re working in sales, it’s important to understand that it’s perfectly normal to feel stressed out. The job itself puts a lot of responsibilities on individuals. We have pressure from managers, pressures from customers, and pressures from ourselves and our families to make an income and put food on the table.
Adding to the pressure is the knowledge that salespeople are responsible for keeping everybody else in a business employed, which is no small task. So the next time you start to feel stress creeping up, take a step back and remember that it’s part of the job. Just make sure to find healthy ways of dealing with it while maintaining your personal well-being.
Join the thousands of top-performing salespeople who use Dooly every day to stay more organized, instantly update their pipeline, and spend more time selling instead of mindless admin work. Try Dooly free, no credit card required. Or, Request a demo to speak with a Dooly product expert right now.