Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Leading myself by taking care of my body

Last year I was listening to Christine Caine's podcast during a series she was doing on leadership. During one of the podcasts, she was talking about the importance of taking care of ourselves physically. I didn't act on this immediately but it stuck with me. I knew that I was not eating well or exercising and not in peak health. If you have ever considered making significant changes to your lifestyle, you will know that it can take a while to be in the right headspace to allow changes. It wasn't until I was asked to step up into a Regional Coordinator position that I started to consider changes seriously.

Those who know me in real life have seen evidence of these changes over this year. I felt strongly that in order to be truly effective as a leader, I need to be giving my body the best access to energy and health as is in my control. I am far from perfect in this area but I am not aiming for perfection. I am aiming for long term lifestyle change. A deviation here and there does not have to derail my changes completely. I am aiming for health and energy. Weight loss is an added bonus but not my focus. I think that is part of what is making the changes more sustainable. My priorities are in the right place.

Tiredness and lethargy have long been enemies of mine. Being the mother of a young child, especially one who has been averse to sleep her entire life, is exhausting. There are many steps that I can take to put myself in the best possible space. I can ensure that I am getting to bed at a reasonable time. I can fuel my body with food that will give longer term energy rather than quick fixes. I can exercise to keep myself strong and increase energy levels. 

Maybe this is an area that you haven't previously considered as being part of your leadership. How are you tracking with taking care of yourself physically? I have experienced the benefit of making changes. I can see the impact on my ability to sustain my energy levels in order to lead well. Maybe the key for you is to adopt the long-term view as I have been seeking to do. I encourage you to consider what one change you could put in place to take of yourself physically this week.

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