Each year brings new opportunities, and for leaders that means we have new opportunities to burn out and stress out as we push to get things done. We need a simple, individualized self-care plan. After all, we are our most valuable asset.
The self-care plan must be simplistic so we can easily stick to it or remember it and get back on track when we loose or our way. It must be individualized so it resonates, inspires, and motivates us individually.
So for me here it goes…
As the foundation of my 2019 self-care plan, I adopt Don Miguel Ruiz’s The Four Agreements. I have enjoyed reading the book and listening to it on audiobooks many times. I know the material. It’s simple; there are so many supportive tools for the work. Thanks to Pinterest there are many free ones. Also, I have many team members who know the materials and can perform CRP when I’m slipping fast into self-defeating behaviors.
The Four Agreements are:
Be Impeccable With Your Word
Don’t Take Anything Personally
Don’t Make Assumptions
Always Do Your Best
In the reverse order, I reflected and journal about the agreements and share these thoughts:
- I will always do my best. As a leader, I will always do my best and continue to work at improving my personal best. But no matter what, the inner-critic and the world demand perfection. Miss Prissy, my personal inner-critic, is not pleased at moment and is hoping this falls by the wayside in the next 30 days like many aspirational New Year resolutions. But I’m declaring and relenting, “Perfection is unattainable and it will not be my measure of success or the kryptonite that paralyzes me.”
- I will not make assumptions.Making assumptions leads to needless worrying and other detrimental emotions so I will ask questions. I will get clear as I can and then act.
- I will not take anything personally. Everyone is living their life and so whatever they do is really to move their life forward based on their beliefs, values, and desires. I may be impacted by their actions but I won’t waste energy thinking it is personal. For me to internalize their motivation and actions is not good for my well-being.
- Finally, I will be impeccable with my word. I value my word. I must make sure I can commit prior to saying I will do something and I must say no when I can’t commit. The hardest part is when the answer is not readily clear or the circumstance change I must timely communicate that. Finally, in the instances that I fail to keep my word, I must honor it by seeing what I can put in place structurally to not have a repeat of the failure.
It’s January 5th and I’m just beginning. I don’t expect overnight transformation or an easy road. I’ll share updates as I go along throughout the year. As always, I thank you for joining me on the leadership journey and invite your comments and feedback.