6 Ways to Find Freedom While Leading
Leading can become a ball and chain for sincere leaders.
Relentless challenge sucks the life out of everyone. Eventually you go through the motions but you’re dead inside.
You cannot run at 100% 100% of the time.
Imagine a less dreadful leadership experience.
How do you find freedom when:
- Day-to-day issues never go away?
- Unexpected fires flare up that distract from your to-do list?
- Pressure from above doesn’t appreciate progress? They want results.
- People problems are dripping faucets?.
- Laughter without fear of tomorrow.
- Lightness of being even when facing difficult challenges.
- Being supportive, but not doing people’s jobs for them.
- Showing empathy without carrying everyone’s burden for them.
Leaders who find freedom joyfully rise to responsibility.
6 ways to find freedom in leadership:
#1. Let go perfectionism.
Don’t beat yourself up so much.
Don’t call yourself a loser to motivate yourself.
Embrace the realities of humanity. You aren’t divine. If you are divine, god is screwed up.
#2. Celebrate the suggestions of others.
Pressure to be smarter than others is self-imposed.
Say, “Tell me more,” when you’re tempted to make snap judgements.
Ask, “How might this work?” when tempted to say, “That won’t work.”
Be quick to encourage and slow to get personally involved. “I’m counting on you.”
#3. Honor the experience of others.
Inexperienced leaders are better off being curious than projecting false confidence.
#4. Practice gratitude for responsibility.
The fact that people trust you is a wonderful privilege. Respect their trust. Enjoy your opportunities.
#5. Know your main contribution.
What positive behaviors come naturally to you? Maximize them.
How might weaknesses limit your main contribution? Deal with them.
#6. Avoid overcommitments.
Repeat after me.
- I don’t have to do everything.
- The world will keep spinning when I’m gone.
- I won’t do other people’s jobs.
I don’t have to do everything.
The world will keep spinning when I’m gone.
I won’t do other people’s jobs.
There is tremendous freedom in those three statements for the leader and the people they lead.
Thanks Abe. Love the addition of, “and the people they lead.” Brilliant!
As usual – great nuggets of wisdom. Number 2 really spoke to me. Especially “Be quick to encourage and slow to get personally involved.” and “Ask, “How might this work?” when tempted to say, “That won’t work.” Thank you Dan for your positive, valuable impact on so many – both directly and indirectly (those who enjoy growth, opportunity and respect from Leaders who learn so much from you). Be well.
Thank you, Jackie. It’s helpful to see the exact parts of a post that you find most useful. It occurs to me that simple thing can be disproportionately useful. Cheers.
Just like Jackie, #2 spoke to me as well.
The line that hit me the hardest was “I’m counting on you”
I went back to read that post as well.
Most people don’t want to disappoint others.
Bringing that to the front line is very powerful.
Accountability and responsibility are huge.
Putting those in the right places is very important to helping attain “freedom”
Thanks Nik. It’s encouraging to be useful. I remember the leader who said, “He was worried about meeting our target.” I was insulted. Tell us you have confidence in us. If you can’t muster confidence in the team, then get a new team or get a new job. 🙂
Dan, I really needed this today. I had a really hard day yesterday. My integrity was challenged behind my back and it left me feeling like a failure. Your words have grounded me again this morning. Thanks.
Thanks David. One of the most painful experiences is having people assume we have bad intentions when we are working to serve. It’s a pleasure to be of service.
Thx Dan for this magnificent post, this is what relevant actionable advice that makes all the difference looks like
Thank you, BCR. I appreciate the good word. Onward and upward!
I used to have my screen saver set to the quote “Don’t let your mouth take on more than your shoulders can bear”. It was a regular reminder to let other people do the work.
Thanks Jennifer. I know why you needed to remind yourself of this. You’re kind and want to be helpful. It takes real intention and some mental shifts to realize that jumping in to help someone isn’t always the kindest thing. Cheers.