As you improve your leadership capacities, I encourage you to make the time for self-renewal and personal regeneration. Make the time to nourish the child within you. Make the time to recreate who you are and see the world through a new set of eyes. Carve out some time to bring balance back into your life, to re-energize your spirit and to nourish your mind. Here are 7 strategies that I know will make a difference for you:
Read for 30 minutes a day. If you’ve read The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari or The Saint, The Surfer & The CEO, you know that I believe in the power of personal growth through reading. Reading books is nothing more than reaching for your highest potential as a human being. When you read a book, you are having a conversation with the author. You begin to play in the author’s orbit and connect with their thinking and who they fundamentally are. Given this, you cannot help but step into a whole new possibility when you read the books of the great people who have walked before us and who are currently with us.
Commune with nature. When you connect with nature, you connect with something larger than yourself. As well, science has confirmed that nature restores us to balance and reduces stress. I love to walk in the woods and reflect deeply on the condition of my life. While I am walking, I ask myself: “What is working and what is not working?” I ponder about the value that I’m adding and the nature of my legacy. The stillness of the woods soothes me and restores perspective. This regular practice simplifies my life.
Spend time in silence. Silence is the world’s sweet restorer. Few of us spend time each day in silence, solitude and stillness. Yet, for thousands of years, the sages and philosophers have reminded us of the healing power of silence. By spending even 10 minutes every morning in some form of silence, you will access more of your potential, reduce stress and renew yourself. You will be better at home and at work. And you will deepen the relationship with yourself (which is the most important relationship of all).
Listen to your favorite music. Music makes my heart happy. Music changes my state almost instantaneously. Music makes me feel fully alive. Music makes me feel thankful. Music energizes me. Reflect on your favorite pieces of music and ensure that they form a regular part of your days and weeks. I believe in having “success structures” to keep you at your best. One of my primary success structures is making sure that my days contain music.
G et a regular massage. Bodywork is important. We store stress within our bodies along with unfelt emotions. A regular massage has wonderful healing powers and will relieve you of tension like few other practices will. Massage is also excellent for circulation and aids in your overall health. A massage is a gift you give yourself and I highly recommend it. I was recently in South Carolina with a Masters Series coaching clients where I experienced a Hot Rocks Massage. The effect was powerful. Whether you choose this form of massage to experience or a traditional Swedish massage, once you engage in this practice on a regular basis, your health levels along with your overall well-being will rise to their next level.
Practice daily gratitude. Few things are as powerful, in terms of life renewal, than connecting to the blessings of your life on a regular basis. Every single one of us has many more blessings in our lives than we are consciously aware of. When we carve out the time to reflect on all the good things that circulate through our days, we notice them more. One of the natural laws that run the world says simply: “what you focus on grows and what you think about expands.” Over the coming weeks, regularly articulate all the things that you are grateful for (ranging from family, good health, a great career to the fact that you live in this country and can speak English).
Chase your passions. What activities did you love to do as a child? All too often, as we age, we neglect the things that we used to love to do as kids. Make a heartfelt commitment to get back to the hobbies, activities and passions that made your heart soar when you were a little child. You’ll be glad you did.