How to Self-Care as a Leader…It’s Not Being Self-Indulgent

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Compassion and empathy are important emotional reactions toward others during this time. Yet, for leaders, it’s also important to remember the airline quote, “Put on your own mask first before helping others.”

Many leaders, especially Type A personalities, overlook self-care as an essential practice. Too often they’re more focused on the bottom line, team members, and their own families. They believe stress and crises to be the norm.

But, during this world-wide health crisis, each of us is creating a “new normal.” It’s become even more important to create and maintain healthful practices for physical and emotional wellbeing. Awareness and practices will make you stronger and more resilient.

I recommend creating regular individual and family practices in the months and years ahead as part of your new normal. Then, share and encourage your team members and others to do the same. It’s the mark of a true leader.

3 Key Practices and How to Make Them Happen

As you read the following practices, what other practices can you create for yourself?

  1. Talk It Out
  • -Now is not the time to hibernate, especially introverts! Use online chat forums and connect with friends, family, and team members.
  • -Be available when team members need to talk voice-to-voice via phone or conferencing systems. Also, check-in on them 1:1 to be sure they are OK and see what they need.
  • -Keep all team members up-to-date with company and industry changes.
  • -Continue 1:1 interactions with your executive coach. Many new opportunities and new innovations will be created during this time. You don’t want to be left behind.
  • -Let immediate family members know where all the legal and financial documents, online and banking passwords are. Make them accessible and update them too! Don’t forget the Medical Power of Attorney docs for you and each family member.
  1. Write It Out
  • -Everyone is experiencing a lot of fear right now, consciously and subconsciously. It will be expressed through upset, anger, withdrawal, or microaggression. Become conscious of your own fears first, then, address those fears of your family and team members.
  • -Next, identify your specific fear by identifying the underlying issues. Now, how can you resolve them? For example, I’m not someone who will share my fears out of fear that someone will think poorly of me. But, I acknowledged my fear of not having access to a monthly prescription. Then, I got into action and called the pharmacist to get an “early refill.”
  • -Journal daily about your “brags,” “things and people you are grateful for,” and “today’s intentions.” Give each family member a notebook and encourage them to journal too. This exercise can help you and your family stay focused. Remember, we cannot control what is happening, but, we can control how we react to it.
  • -Send daily emails to your team members and family members not living with you. It’s critical to stay in touch. But, “sharpen your antenna” to what is being written and what is not being articulated. Pay attention when they state, “I’m fine.” This will avoid later surprises.
  • -During this time, encourage creativity. If you don’t have the supplies needed, draft a plan. Then, look for other resources to achieve the same or similar result. Many great novels, movie ideas, and other creative pursuits were created in history during times of crises.
  1. Walk It Out
  • -Instead of binge-watching TV or streaming movies, get outside and walk. Remember the 6-foot rule.
  • -If you have been directly exposed or are ill, follow community guidelines on what you can and cannot do.
  • -Take part in online dancing or gym classes. These are only a couple of ideas to get you moving inside your home.

Remember, as leaders, self-care is not self-indulgent. It’s a practice that respectfully encourages you, your family, and team members to do the same.

©Jeannette Seibly, 2020

Jeannette Seibly is an award-winning dynamic results coach and keynote speaker. For the past 27 years, she has guided the creation of leaders to excel in achieving results. Are you ready for an unprecedented 2020? Contact Jeannette today for straight talk with dynamic results. Don’t forget to listen to her podcasts on Anchor.FM or

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