Self-leadership is essential to living in tune with our vision and desired legacy. Self-leadership is the first link in the chain of high-performance leadership, if it is weak, everything else is vulnerable to breakdown. Below are six key elements of self-leadership that enable leaders to thrive. These elements overlap and have distinctive emphases.
Rhythm is the flow and harmony of our life. When our rhythm is harmonized, we are giving the right attention, time and focus to the right things. When our rhythm is off, we are neglecting the wrong areas of our life, investing too little or too much time one area to the detriment of others. Perfect balance is not the goal of this word. Life is too dynamic to pursue balance. Instead, harmony is the word that speaks to health in the midst of competing priorities, agendas, and responsibilities.
Rituals are intentional sequences that align us to our grander vision, purpose, and perspective. Rituals require us to be very present and engaged. They are a conduit for connecting to our deepest life purpose. Rituals serve as reminders for the things that matter most. An example of a ritual would be reflecting on our life vision plan at the start of the week, reflecting on our values alignment at the end of the week, scripture reading or prayer.
Routines are the repeated set of habits or processes that empower our potential and performance. Routines bring structure and organization to our life in a manner that accomplishes our goals and vision. Initiating routines requires effort and focus, but routines require less active energy over time once they are established. An example of a routine would be an exercise routine, a morning routine, or a weekly planning routine.
Recalibrate is the intentional process to set and sustain priority focus. In the whirlwind of daily leadership, priorities can become hidden in the fog of noise, conversations, urgent requests and surprises. Leaders must be purposeful and intentional to determine priorities and establish planned check-ins to maintain course.
Refueling speaks to the diet, exercise, and rest needed for sustained performance over time. Refueling is the self-care and self-management required to function at our peak performance and avoid burnout. To best serve organizations and employees requires a leader who recharges and has the energy to required for strong self-leadership.
Remembering is about living life with gratitude. It is about receiving the gift of today and celebrating those we work with. Leaders are pulled and pushed from various directions. The pace and chaos that can swirl around them can accelerate the speed of life in an unhelpful manner. Remembering is both a posture and set of practices that help a leader live with gratitude and be fully present in today.