- What are you giving yourself this holiday season?
What are you giving yourself this holiday season?
The holiday season is fast upon us and it’s a short time before the new year. I find there are three things I need to remember to give myself this time of year: Evaluate what I need to do personally versus what I can delegate, check if I need an attitude adjustment and remind myself to rest. All of these topics are just as important to remember at home as they are at work.
Delegate – One research study showed that over half of business owners believe if they delegate 10% of their workload to someone else, they can grow their business 20%. The key to realizing the increase is evaluating what you are currently doing that you can assign responsibility and authority to someone else.
- Look at your schedule – Look for recurring tasks or meetings that if you delegated to someone else would not only free up time for you, but also help them gain experience for future advancement or growth. Be careful delegating personnel issues and if you do, make sure you are not doing it to avoid the issue.
- Stop one thing – As you look at your schedule, look for things you can stop all together doing. We are all creatures of habit, and sometimes we keep doing unnecessary things.
- Communicate – For the delegation to be successful, you need to clearly define and agree upon the task. Use questions to make sure the person you are delegating to knows how to complete the task, to show you will be supporting them and to help them see how successfully completed the task will benefit company.
- Follow up with appreciation – Be sure to recognize and thank others. Delegation can also be an opportunity to highlight the success of the team/individual for doing the job well.
Positive attitude – Statistics show that when your brain is more positive you are 31% more productive. Having a positive attitude or optimism is not about having a blind, Pollyanna optimism. Leaders use learned optimism. Just like any other mindset shifts, this is not a quick fix. Researchers have dispelled the 3 weeks to change a habit logic and instead say it is closer to 2 months with a range of 3 weeks to 8 months. The good news is that any shift can produce good results today. Someone in marketing will tell you that it takes a dozen positive reviews to make up for one negative one. Leaders see this logic in their lives and are on the lookout for negative or limiting thoughts.
- Focus on what’s working – You learn optimism each time you think about what is working in a situation instead of focusing only on what’s not working.
- Look inward – Another way to learn to be positive is to know your personal strengths. I have found that people who have healthy self-esteem are less likely to be negative.
- Look at who you are hanging out with – Evaluate the attitude of your peers, mentors and even friends, and if needed, seek out positive people because optimism can be contagious.
- Stay in the present – Lastly, when you catch yourself in a negative thought, ask yourself if the emotions are stemming from past experiences or future expectation. One way to move away from negativity is to focus on the present situation.
Rest – We all have less and less time to focus on ourselves. The endless meeting schedules can leave you feeling frustrated and tired. The busyness of the holiday season constricts your time even more and it is hard to set boundaries.
- Grab a nap – Most of us power through the day by grabbing a latte instead of taking a moment to rest. Sara Mednick, PhD, a psychologist at the University of California, Riverside found in her research that while caffeine enhances alertness and attention, naps boost abilities in addition to enhancing some forms of memory consolidation.
- Exercise – It sounds counter intuitive, but I have found the more that I have going on the more important it is for me to take the time to exercise. Regularly increasing your heart rate helps you have greater endurance throughout the day and will also help you sleep better.
- Breath – If a nap is not possible, spend 5 minutes focusing on your breathing. If your job requires extensive time sitting at a computer or in meetings, this is especially important. Linda Stone coined the phrase “email apnea” which means “a temporary absence or suspension of breathing, or shallow breathing, while doing email.” I have found if I stop to breath deeply, I end up with a better outcome because it helps me gain focus.
- Laugh – Sometimes, a good laugh can also recharge your energy. In an Inc. Magazine article, “Best Reason to Have a Belly Laugh at Work”, author Marla Tabaka sites numerous studies that show laughter offsets the impact of mental stress and increases creativity and productivity. It can also improve your attitude!
If you struggle with these three things, look for resources or a partner to help you. Asking for help is a sign of strength vs. weakness. You have the resources within yourself to figure out what is blocking you, but I have found personally that having someone prompt me with good questions gets me to the solution faster.
A successful manager/leader taps into talents and resources with the purpose of supporting and bringing out the best in themselves and others. An executive coach can help you maximize the human talent present in your company regardless of where they work. If you’re interested in exploring a coaching relationship contact Bill Burtch at Harmony for a consultation at 901-272-7390 or [email protected]