Self Care for Leaders

 No matter what industry or sector you are in, you affected in your work by the pandemic. You and your team are experiencing increased work related stress.  This is in addition to all the other stresses that have been added to our lives:  worrying about your health, that of loved ones, and picking up new roles/ responsibilities, and checking on neighbours, and home schooling.

While stress can’t be avoided during these times it can be managed. If it is not managed well, it can lead to increased risk for developing an ongoing mental health challenges, not to mention possibly costly mistakes and errors in your work and that of your team.

Having a well thought out self care plan is one of the best counter measures possible. Managing the risks now will help now and put you in the best position in the post pandemic world.

In my last post, I presented some tips on how to be an effective leader during these times, such as being kind. To begin this process you must first take care of your own wellness.  You need to be kind to yourself before you have the capacity to be kind to others.

Your self care plan needs to address the various aspects of you:  physical, mental, social, and spiritual. The most effective is do at least a small piece in every area every day and address the bigger activities by scheduling them as time permits.

Under physical: Are you moving your body? For some, that may mean going for a run every day; for others, it may mean getting up and stretching every hour.

Under mental health: Are you limiting your exposure to sensationalized messages that are increasing your distress?  Are you aware of your stress level and being intentional with where you focus your mental energy?  Are you doing at least one thing just for yourself each day?

Under social: Are you maintaining social connections?  Are you having a conversation with someone not in your household at least once a day? Do you have a network of friends or colleagues to talk with when things are difficult?

Under spiritual: What are you doing to connect with what fills your soul? For some that may be prayer or meditation, for others a gratitude journal, and others connecting to nature in some way. What fills you up and connects to your greater purpose?

You are setting the tone and your team will follow your example of what you do, not necessarily what you say. To get the best from your team and support them for the duration, they need to feel the leadership from you.

To learn more about how to build in ways to keep workplace stress at a manageable level, reach out to schedule your confidential, complementary consultation at [email protected]

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