MY TWO CENTS:
We began a series in our last edition of MTC in which I was sharing some insights from Dr. Fred Johnson of Initiative One in Green Bay, WI. His thoughts on executive leadership struck me, and I think our readers will find them valuable enough for us to use this media for a short series.
As leaders in whatever capacity, we know that we’ll experience stress. In order to keep that stress from derailing our ability to influence, we need to have the discipline to strengthen ourselves. So, let’s dive into the first couple of disciplines that Dr. Johnson shared to help us manage the responsibilities that come with leadership.
- Take responsibility to take care of your needs first.
- You can't give from an empty tank.
- A servant leader must serve themselves first before they’re able to serve others.
- One way to do this is by engaging in “Purposeful Non-purposeful Activity.” These are activities done deliberately to free your mind. They require your full attention and engagement without allowing your mind to wrestle with your areas of stress.
- You must intentionally schedule time to refresh yourself.
- The answer to anxiety is not to work harder, but to find a way to create inner silence.
- Practice the art of self-reflection
- This is NOT an invitation to shame and beat yourself up.
- The ability to evaluate by saying, "I made a mistake" versus "I am a mistake.”
- The greater your level of influence, the more time that needs to be spent in self-reflection.
- Questions you should be asking yourself:
- Is this going to move my organization forward in a big way?
- Am I being bold, or safe, in my decision making?
- Is purpose driving, or fear dominating, my decision making?
- Are values motivating, or politics driving, my decisions?
- Ask yourself, "Are we making decisions based on..."
Some people may find it natural to take care of themselves and to be self-reflective. However, many leaders struggle in these areas because they’re so busy trying to accomplish the next goal or to avoid the next obstacle so those they serve can achieve what they need. Exercising these first two disciplines in our lives can help begin to redirect our energy and our thinking in a way that will bless those we lead. Shall we give it a try together?
Make it a great week!
Scott Cousino, CFP®, CEPA®