“An empty lantern provides no light. Self-Care allows your leadership light to shine.”
Self-care is vital for leaders, to shine the light ahead for others.
The lesson we learn from the discomfort of our world turning upside down is the importance of self-care. Refuelling yourself on a daily basis will both protect and increase your leadership energy. Right now, we all need to achieve symmetry and balance, when so much is askew. Leadership success during COVID-19 will be defined by those leaders who show up day after day with the energy and optimism that inspires people to work together to achieve extraordinary results.
2020 is a long-haul leadership test. It is encouraging to hear so many leaders in forum and coaching conversations in the past two weeks, commit to investing in their physical, mental, emotional and spiritual wellbeing. They understand that now is the time to let go of self- sacrificial, workaholic, perfectionistic behaviours and to treat themselves with care and respect.
Self-care needs to be something you actively plan, rather than something that just happens. It is an active choice and mindset. It involves selecting and actioning a range of enjoyable activities that enhance energy, restore health and reduce stress. There are many ways to do this and self-care is something that needs to be personalised for every individual. Many of my coaching clients have a daily routine, self-care plan, which is very important during chaotic times. During this Covid-19 battle, I am also recommending reflecting on 10 self-care questions.
COVID-19 DAILY SELF CARE QUESTIONS
- What am I grateful for today?
- Who am I going to connect with today?
- How can I remind myself of my strengths today?
- What expectation can I let go of today?
- How will I exercise my body today?
- What can I learn today?
- When will I get outside today in fresh air and appreciate nature?
- What creative idea/project will I work on today?
- What nutritious food and drink am I going to consume today?
- How can I give back today?
A NON-NEGOTIABLE ACT OF SELF RESPECT
A worthy leader regards the world as a complex system composed of people, creatures and ecologies and so respects, protects and cares for every part of that system, including themselves. There is much imbalance in our world today, but every leader can influence positively in their own world. Start with yourself, by understanding the importance of strong boundaries and self-care practices to invest in your energy and motivation.
Every day during COVID-19 will test our well-being. Self-care is a counter intuitive daily must for leaders under pressure. It shows others that we respect ourselves and that we are taking responsibility for maximizing our potential. If we are not in optimal health, our capacity to think clearly and creatively can be impeded. And we won’t be able to care for our people. Go above and beyond, for yourself!
FOLLOW THIS MAP
In my book- The Worthy Leader – I couple two universal and timeless notions – wisdom and leadership to speed up leadership development and improve business outcomes. The Map below provides a comprehensive picture of all the developmental elements you need to switch on to accelerate your growth. The map has five key elements, each of which has three coordinates. I began with self-care as during COVID-19, it is our oxygen mask.
The interdependent map elements are listed below:
- Knowing – The cognitive element: Our know howwill help guide us through this crisis.
- Connecting – The emotional element: The relationships that will nourish, resource and sustain us, especially in our darkest moments.
- Being – The spiritual element: Our self-belief, sense of purpose and character will steady us.
- Discerning – The element of insight: How we make the best judgments and decisions in haste and with insufficient data, as the crisis unfolds.
- Delivering – The element of action: The actions we take in an unknown space, hopefully resulting in better outcomes.
- Impact – This concerns consequences: The lasting positive impact our decisions and actions can have on our family, friends, business and ourselves.
Maryanne Mooney has never been so inspired to help leaders connect with their potential and encouraging them to act on it. Her goal is to help leaders navigate their challenges and to support their growth. She does this through the power of meaningful and practical conversations. In the past 25 years, Maryanne has worked on five continents with more than 10,000 leaders and teams. Her focus is leadership, team and organization development, across all industry sectors. Her experience includes building two consulting firms that were market leaders. Maryanne lives in Australia and works with leading organizations throughout the world. She is an executive coach, president of the Board for the USA Senhoa Foundation and a YPO Spouse and Certified Forum Facilitator. Maryanne's method to coach leaders develop faster on their journey to wisdom is outlined in her recently published book – The Worthy Leader – From Mastery to Potential. The book is available on her website – www.worthyleader.net.
Maryanne will be writing a weekly column in this newsletter, drawing on her book and years of leadership development experience, to provide practical tips about how to be a worthy leader, in troubled times.
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