Sales Training Programs for Startups

How to Handle Frustration Like a BEAR

603815_811266108964677_2337111575860034051_nFrustration in sales and life can be crippling. It can lead to anger, self-doubt, missed opportunities, quitting, wrecked relationships, a bad reputation, loss of sales and overall destructive behavior.

The cause of frustration comes down to our perception of reality. What am I capable of, what are my goals and what happens if I get pushback along the way or if I don’t achieve them.

When it comes to motivation, we’re either intrinsically or extrinsically  motivated.
  • Intrinsic motivation is the internal drive that moves us forward toward a certain goal, like the feeling of accomplishment, challenging yourself to do something you weren’t sure you could do then doing it, being the best, etc.
  • Extrinsic motivation is the external drive, like money, a promotion, the acceptance of others, etc.
Frustration is handled in the same way.
  • Internal: we beat ourselves up internal by losing trust and confidence in ourselves
  • External: we lash out externally throwing things, beating our fists, heavy breathing, yelling at someone, etc.
Bottom line is we all feel frustration, yet our response is what’s important:
  • How do we react when faced with a setback?
  • How do we respond on the last day of the month when we need one more sale to hit our quota and the prospect that was on the fence decides not to buy?
  • How do we respond when someone cancels their service and we get a chargeback that costs us hundreds or thousands of dollars?
  • How do we respond when we’ve been working with a client for months who finally decides not to buy and we don’t get paid?
  • How do we respond when quotas increase by 10% but the payout goes down?
  • How do we respond when we’ve been working for that promotion and they end up bringing in an external hire?
  • How do we respond when our team simply won’t perform and it’s more a will issue than skill?
  • How do we respond when our sales team is underperforming and our managers don’t seem to care?
  • If you’re not in sales, fill in your own frustration point here: How do we ____________?

As Keanu Reeves said in SPEED, “What do you do?  What do you do?”


Here are some response triggers you can activate to help control your response and take the power back from your frustration:
  1. Prepare for the storm: if I buy a house in South Florida, I know for sure that I’m going to be hit by hurricane. If I failed to plan for it, I can’t be surprised when I’m angry and frustrated when my house is completely devastated. In sales, just like in certain areas of our life, it’s a guarantee that we will face frustration often. The difference is how we prepare for it. Have preemptive and reactive responses ready:
  2. Pre-empt frustration: Create routines that keep you in a state of relaxation to avoid frustration:
    • 2-3 minute relaxation or motivation routines every hour (experienced an incredible one with Brendon Burchard at a seminar – it works!!)  Breathing in/out through your diaphragm and bringing yourself back to focus
    • Don’t set appointments for early in the morning (if they don’t pick up you’re frustrated).
    • Bunch activities together then take a break (25 calls or 10 prospecting activities, then call a happy customer)
    • Create lunch plans with your favorite people and your favorite places (have something to look forward to in the morning, then come back refreshed)
    • Discuss moving up in the company with your manager.  The extra accountability to uphold executive maturity will help you deal with your own external responses in a more positive, controlled manner.
    • Walk the floor and spend time with your best managers/ teams/ salespeople
  3. Predetermined reactive responses: Come up with 3-5 routines that naturally calm you to insert immediately as you get frustrated:
    • Walk around the building with a mentor
    • Go into a quiet room and do a 5 minute breathing or meditation routine
    • Listen/watch a motivational playlist on YouTube or iTunes (create this week if you don’t have it already) or visit your favorite site that puts you in a positive mindset every time (Chive, ComedyCentral, MarieForleo, SportCenter, etc).  Only spend 5 mins, otherwise it can be a distraction and demotivator.
    • Coach someone new
    • Find an accountability partner to “walk you off the ledge”
    • Write an email using your personal email provider (DO NOT send it – just get your frustration out and then delete it)
  4. Evaluate:  Immediately evaluate your behavior when you get frustrated and rate it on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being not acceptable and 10 being ideal response.  Write down 2 or 3 bullets of observation and if you gave yourself a low rating, plan out your response for next time and commit to improving your response to 8 or better next time.

It’s time to take back control of your frustration so you can make more sales, take advantage of more opportunities, become more influencial and just feel freakin’ awesome day in, day out!

Get proactive and intentional!!

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