Greetings dear friends & welcome to my world again this week. Every leader knows, or should know, what it is like for you when your heart & soul is not in it, & your life is not living it.
I remember hearing from a speaker at a conference once saying the hardest thing about the life of a leader is it being so “daily”. On reflection then, maybe I could modify his statement just a bit to say “the hardest thing about life is it being so weekly”. It is so true, correct? Monday is always coming… & it comes with relentless consistency.
As a leader you know the moment you finish the week, then a countdown has begun toward the next week one. And when you do this month after month, year after year, you can begin to just crank out the same old stuff, rather than craft & develop the business or organisation to the next level. The weekly routine preparation can become purely mechanical & just another task on your to do list. It can become more of a burden than a blessing & begin to feel more like a grind than a gift.
Many of us know what it is to like motivating oneself. This feeling has certainly been true of me more times than I want to admit. Perhaps the hardest thing is keeping your heart & soul actually motivated.
Guarding my heart has huge implications for me. My passion, my effectiveness, my boldness, & my emotional power flow out of the soul.
So, how do you keep motivated to inspire your heart & soul to be engaged week after week?
Through the years, I have found a few ways to help me stay motivated. Prioritizing my schedule can lapse & nothing sucks the joy out of a week like scrambling to pull together a plan at the last minute. Just like you I imagine, I have had weeks where all the urgent things or distracting things pushed my preparation to the fringes. Sometimes the intrusions on my preparation time could not be helped. But the truth is, sometimes I just let the urgent crowd out the most important.
Even in the coming twilight of my career, in the SME world I have come to love, the respect for all those who have assisted & supported us; is the one time when most of your customers, suppliers or most important team members can be present any day & you have the chance to shepherd, cast vision, instruct, comfort, & share both your journey & the intellectual capital one has developed. This all deserves priority space on our calendars.
Also, by getting started early in the week (or even weeks ahead), I can allow myself to anticipate & look forward to the next topic or project I am working on. As I think about the week ahead & ponder all the developments, it begins to live in me rather than become just another task I am required to do.
There is significant research to suggest many leaders struggle with this. There have been seasons where I have been stagnant & my time in preparation sadly lacking.
The irony is, I can actually become disconnected from the very task or project which requires my attention. Because I know my tendency, it has become very important for me to put a firewall between my personal pursuits & my concentration to the actual mission, vision & end goal.
One of the things to have really assisted me with this is reading, not only a good novel, but with reading books which feed my soul. I would encourage you to engage reading weekly; I find it therapeutic & will assist your relaxation more completely. The other personal development to achieve this for me in more recent times has been my personal growth practicing mediation.
One of the other things through the years to have helped me is to remind myself of the “why”, not just the “what”, is the final objective.
I remind myself the journey from a pure & engaged soul is no small task; but it is worth the struggle. So, here is the question I want to leave you with: What steps do you need to take to ensure your heart & soul is in your joy of rising each day? Sit with this question for a few moments. I look forward to connecting with you again next week.
I hope my comments each week are helpful dear readers; & again, provide just an opinion, from my world. Thank you for taking the time to be with me, I hope my journey may encourage you also. This is Kenn Butler in Paradise, Nelson, with my best wishes.