What is your most precious and personal asset as a leader? As I toss this out in various circles, I often hear the response, “time.” While the majority of you may concur and find the clock to be your nemesis, I would argue individuals and teams can manage time well and still find themselves exhausted, stretched, and unable to concentrate due to the shortage of an even more precious resource — energy. Leaders have access to a number of tools to help manage calendar and clock, but how many of you have a system for energy management? The path to power, productivity, success and satisfaction is paved by the leader’s skill of energy management.
To maintain a powerful pulse in our lives, we must learn a tempo, balance, and focus of engagement and renewal.
Flavius Philostratus, ancient Greek philosopher and famed Olympic coach, was the first to discover the benefits of rhythmic workout pattern founded upon exertion followed by rest. The idea was simple: the body uses biochemical resources when it works, and must rest to replenish them. When athletes struggle, it is often caused by a disproportionate training-to-rest calibration. You may not be an Olympic athlete, but the same principle holds true for those looking to compete successfully in life and leadership. Too much energy expended, with insufficient rest and recovery, leads to breakdown. Full engagement depends on balancing between full activity, rest and recovery. It is not a secret that the whole universe spins on a similar cadence – sunrise, sunset; high tide, low tide; full moon, new moon.
The heartbeat of engagement ought to be a bottom line priority. The unfortunate reality is that organizations frequently stumble and squander unnecessary resources. In fact, an alarming trend indicates that nearly 70 percent of Americans are reported to be less than fully engaged at work. Further perplexing is the fact that even a larger percentage report being disengaged from home due to an increasing and overbearing load at work. This is the maniacal mess of our age. We are neither here, nor there.
Owning Your Zone of Engagment
Training for full engagement involves purpose, self-awareness and intentional tempo, balance and focus.
- First – Deeply define what drives your existence on the planet. What is your purpose and how might this purpose be fulfilled within each of the 5 Circles of Influence (Self, Family, Team, Organization, and Community).
- Second – Examine yourself. Create a baseline by identifying how you now manage your energy.
- Third – Face facts squarely. Rituals and routines are intentional actions you invest to build healthy patterns and break bad ones. Be precise, specific, and positive about new tendencies you need to onboard to securely manage between the daily challenges of stimulus and response.
- Forth – Chart the course. Examine yourself daily to track your growth and progress.
People around the world struggle with work/life inefficiencies. It is difficult to be productive and manage the relational dynamics of staying connected with others while finding routines to keep our batteries at full charge. The 5 Gears book project came to light as Jeremie Kubicek and Steve Cockram masterfully applied from their experiences in working across all global sectors of leadership over the past two decades. The 5 Gears is a powerful concept that has the ability to radically change the way you live, lead, and serve. Check it out at http://5gears.com/book/.
Energy management makes full engagement possible. Take action today. Join the Liberating Leaders Movement to accelerate your team’s health, alignment, and capacity.