When life gets in the way of your leadership

So it happened again. You were ready. You had finally developed the courage and confidence to walk in your purpose. It was not an easy undertaking by far but you did it. You found a way. Everything around you sends the signal that the beauty that existed in your dreams is just around the corner. You will no longer have to live a life that someone else carved out for you. This is your life and you finally get to live it the way you imagined then….

Life throws you not one, not two, but a whole set of curveballs. Your marriage is falling apart. Your kids are out of control. You family finances are shaky your emotions are all over the place and you just can’t seem to get a hold of your life. Your stress level has gone through the roof and all of a sudden, the life that you thought you were about to live diminished right before your eyes.

When you lead, the weight of everything is on your shoulders. As you quiet the raging waters for the people you lead, you nurse your own wounds and toy with the idea that a word of comfort may come your way from those who don’t even know that you are suffering. How are you supposed to keep the ship afloat when you are drowning in your own sorrows?

You truly have to take care of yourself. Leadership is all about inspiring, motivating, encouraging, empowering and influencing people to follow your lead to achieve a common goal. But how successful can we be if our spirits are low and we struggle to pull it all together to stand in the strength that is needed to move in sync? Understanding yourself and who you are as a leader is important but valuing who you are and caring for that part of you that is in its own mini crises must be at the forefront of how you approach your life’s work.

It has been said that you must care for yourself before you can be present and available for your family. This holds true in all areas of your life. Self care is the single most thing that you can do for yourself to provide a foundation for overcoming the challenges in life. Being attentive to your needs and considerate of your spiritual, mental, emotional and physical state is most important along the journey of your life’s work.

So where do you begin? Maximize your alone time to benefit the whole you.

  1. Create a space in your home where you can spend quiet moments to reflect, meditate and bring yourself to a place of calm.
  2. In your workplace, if possible ,have a location where you can go when you need to gather your thoughts or just to breathe.
  3. Monitor your self talk in this space. The goal is positive and not negative
  4. Consider journaling to get out what you are feeling.
  5. Be careful not to beat yourself up. The goal is to identify what you are feeling and the emotions that are associated with those feelings.
  6. Spend some time breathing, to clear the space in your mind and body
  7. If you are facing an immediate problem decide how you will solve it or what actions you will take to resolve the issue
  8. Before leaving the space, affirm yourself with positive, kind words.

As we know, in our life there will always be troubles, wherever we go and whatever we do, we will still have to deal with our own set of challenges. As we lead, we tend to put our own issues on the back burner because it is our role to stand out front, make decisions and support the work that is being done. Regardless of whether we are falling apart inside or not, the work has to be done. People depend on us to be at the forefront. Sometimes, the very challenge may not be the issue but moving past it or even continuing our daily professional lives in the midst of our personal trauma often outweighs to actual problem.

If you fail to take care of yourself, you will find it difficult to keep going and overcome your struggles. Make a habit of spending some quiet time alone to gather your through and bring yourself to a place of clam. You absolutely must be a priority in your own life before you can prioritize others in yours

@2022 Kimberly Boswell Seymore