As we close out this series of discussions on “sharpening the saw” to use 20th century leadership icon Stephen Covey’s phrase I want to close with the most sensitive of the three issues for personal balance and effectiveness: spiritual reflection and balance.
Regardless of your faith or belief system taking time out to reflect, pray, or meditate to start and end your day even for a few minutes to calm your body and your mind. If I’m sounding a bit out there to you, don’t give up quite yet. We are all running a marathon in our organizations today, often at a sprinter’s pace and if we don’t pause to reflect, take inventory, and renew the daily grind can overwhelm us.
I want to challenge you to avoid the over-used term “self-care” (which can be perceived as selfish) and focus on being selfless in your service to your fellow board and executive leaders. Observe them, interact with the, and encourage them to focus on one, two, or all three dimensions of sharpening the saw.
If you can lead by example and share what you are doing that may be relevant or refer them to a coach, trainer, or physician in your network that can help them on their journey. This is a very personal discussion so tread lightly and with good intent. This in itself will provide you with a bit of renewal in your own journey.
This is a sensitive and very personal issue for all of us so I want to tread lightly but provide at least something more than the amorphous blob discussion we see in current culture. Regardless of your faith or belief system even a few minutes of meditation, prayer, or reflection to open your day and empty your mind at the end of the day can make a world of difference in the effects of daily and cumulative stress on you and your colleagues. Even if this doesn’t stem from a belief in a “higher power” or God simply emptying your mind and focusing on a pleasant visual scene or memory can really lessen the stress you are under. If this is something you are uncomfortable with seek out a spiritual counselor, priest, rabbi, or imam that can provide a little direction forward.
As we close this series of discussion about your individual effectiveness remember that a team is only as strong as it’s least effective team member and do your best for your work colleagues, your family, your friends, and yourself to take the time to invest in your mental, physical, and spiritual well-being in these challenging times.
From my faith system and values May the God of Abraham Give You Peace, Renew in You A Clean Heart, and Bless You with the Continued Gifts of Servant Leadership in your journey ahead.
Connect with Jay Millen on LinkedIn.
Jay Millen - Talent Steward & Value Creator
Managing Partner Board and CEO Practice at The Caldwell Partners
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