Last week we looked at some of the contributors of exhaustion. I suggested that you look over the list of contributors and see if you can identify any one of them as a regular part of your life. This week I want us to look at steps we can take to overcome the exhaustion in our lives as leaders.
- Make a conscious mental shift.
Before you make any lasting change you have to make a conscious mental shift. The mistake many people make is to initiate changes without making the necessary mental adjustment.
We see this most often in the area of weight loss and exercise programs. Many people make the emotional decision to go on a diet because they feel badly, or were made to feel badly, about being overweight. The problem with acting based on emotions without the conscious mental shift is that emotions can only take you so far. Consequently, we see people go on a diet and lose weight. But sometime later, they’ll have regained the weight, and in some cases even more weight than previously.
You must make the conscious mental shift from simply wanting to overcome exhaustion to understanding why it is important and necessary to you. It could be because of your health, your family, your followers or your relationship with God.
Having only an emotional reaction to the contributors of exhaustion (see last week’s blog) will lead to short-lived changes. Think of the many times you tried making changes and it lasted for just a short time before you were back to your old ways. The major reason is usually that you did not make a conscious mental shift.
For changes to last, they have to be driven by a mental shift leading to choices based on what you know you are trying to achieve, rather than waiting for your feelings to motivate you.
Having made the conscious mental shift and arriving at why overcoming exhaustion is necessary and important to you, you are now ready to start taking action.
- Start with your calendar and time management.
If you do not control your time, others will do it for you. Schedule in the things you need in order to avoid becoming exhausted. Schedule things like sleep, exercise, and eating healthy, and regularly. Make time for your family and for time alone with God. Schedule time to play and rest.
Events and circumstances do happen that will throw off your calendar. At times, you will have periods of busyness and exhaustion. But these should be the exception rather than the norm. Your day’s schedule could be wiped out with one phone call, and that is expected. But most of your days should not be like that, nor should you be living most of your days in a state of busyness and exhaustion.
- Go public with you plans to overcome your exhaustion
Ask one or two people close to you to hold you accountable for the changes you are making to overcome exhaustion. Plans to overcome habitual, unhealthy behavior, kept to yourself, usually do not succeed. You need others to encourage you and hold you accountable.
While I have suggested the overall steps necessary, you must make specific plans for how you are going to change the way any contributors to exhaustion are affecting your life at the moment.
You are more likely to carry through with a plan that you design rather than one I might suggest.
Making the conscious mental shift, followed by intentionally managing your calendar and going public with your plans, will help you overcome your exhaustion as a leader.
If you would like help in achieving your goals in any area of your life, call us at 208-880-0307 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a complimentary coaching session. To read Errol’s other posts, visit Christ-Centered Life Coaching.