A conversation I had and wonder if you can relate…
“It's tough to give what you don't have.”
True. I'm exhausted. Disconnected.
“And it doesn't change that most of us have people who are depending on us for something right?”
Yep. At work. At home. Feel like I'm failing at it all.
“What if you start with giving yourself some space to develop strategies that are authentic to you and some grace to experiment?”
I don't have time.
“I get it. Can you sustain the pace and stay connected to those you lead, those you go home to, people you want to be in relationship with? How is the pace impacting who you want to become?”
Not an uncommon conversation. And honestly, depending on the day, you can find me on either side of that script.
The do more with less, stacking the calendar [think 3D puzzles that not only have a flat pattern but stack on top] strategies are creating disconnection with those we lead, love and ourselves.
It can result in a board creating a long-term plan without true strategy and even less sustainability, but we check the box and get it done. Teams meeting a deadline yet experiencing little true engagement and even less inspiration to innovate and collaborate: two necessary elements to face challenges that diminish the problem and not the people.
We stack the calendar knowing we will never get it all done, leading us to feel like failures and we either try harder, experience paralysis or walk away. Exhausted and disconnected.
That doesn't have to be the experience. At least not the norm. A norm that has subtly emerged, well, as the day to day normal.
There needs to be a point of reset or we break.
Are you there yet?
[resilience] a skill that can be developed to offer strength and stability when recovering from difficulties and leverage when facing new challenges.
We can start by acknowledging that resilience, or some might call grit, isn't for some, it's an essential for us all. It can be developed. It's not a program. It's not a buzzword to throw around at the office like positive confetti. That actually does more damage.
Resilience is a strategy. We can grow it in ourselves and gift it to every person we encounter simply by how we treat them.
It takes pausing enough to be present.
Trust me, I get it we're busy, BUT slowing enough to be present with the people around you is a powerful strategy that determines what your future calendar looks like; including that personal calendar that reflects your life.
Practice with a few no cost, grit-giving ideas:
1] a thank you that states specifically how the other person positively impacted you, others, a situation.
2] a text, email, note that states what you specifically appreciate about the other person [or maybe even an organization] and how they are impacting for good.
3] a reminder to someone on why their work matters, how it is specifically impacting you/others.
[Folks, I got one of these last month. A person who had participated in trainings and leadership conversations over this year. How the words and strategies fueled him in his career and simultaneously in practicing greater self-care. The result of his email? A resilience boost he had no idea was desperately needed by me that day and changed how I showed up for others].
That conversation I started with, giving what you don't have, it's a real-life example of how we tend to ourselves [or don't] impacts our ability to tend to others, how we connect. It determines if we sabotage or flourish our own resilience and theirs.
As you plan 2023…
As you consider professional development, go for what will refuel you, your teams in ways that are relevant to them. If it can strengthen them professionally AND personally it's a win.
And leaders, as you plan for the team or board, tend to your table. Investing in your own wellbeing can change how you connect with those you lead now and what your "home calendar" looks years from now.
Sustainable Strategies that Invest in Wellbeing
Your team, the board, yourself, can accomplish work in ways that build connection and capacity. It impacts how the work is completed, the experience of those doing the work and how people go home. Check out training/speaking topics
to design your unique development strategies that create the energy needed to activate the mission and inspire the people behind the mission.
Explore what realignment could mean
for your life or possibly it's time for that reset to lead with greater confidence and clarity through challenges. Coaching conversations are designed to weave your natural strengths with research-based strategies to reach your goals. Explore coaching options here. [clients often use professional development dollars to invest in their leadership…sounds like a grit-gift for yourself that gives to the team!]
Join me in rethinking the stacked calendars. There's a strategy in you that is ready to emerge. Give it the space and grace to surface!
I'm here to help! Sandy