A measure of stability for leaders in stormy times

by | May 1, 2020 | CEO/Executive Directors, Organizational Leadership, Personal Leadership | 0 comments

I find it amazing at how differently leaders are dealing with the affects of the pandemic. And at what stages each of us is in. One leader recalled hearing that some people are

  1. only able to focus on the next 30-minutes
  2. others are able to focus on the next 30 days and
  3. a few are starting to be able to think about the next 3 months

Where are you?

Fogginess is normal right now

My focus ability keeps changing. Sometimes I feel like I can think of the next month or two. Then I find it hard to focus on the next few minutes!

Social scientist and change expert Hildy Gottlieb reminded me that this inability to focus, this fogginess, is perfectly normal right now. All the shortcuts our brains do to help us live life are no longer working. Virtually nothing we do right now is on autopilot. So, not only is the cortisol from stress decreasing our ability the do executive thinking (see Jessica Sharp’s training on stress), but we’re flooded with even more decisions to make.

We are not able to “just run errands.” Now we have to think of face coverings and touching surfaces and disinfecting and should we get a little more of a few items “just in case.”

That is very taxing on our brains. And on the rest of us.

Developing a daily focus

One thing I keep hearing from leaders is the benefit of some sort of daily rhythm. Wait. Don’t check out. I’m not talking about a time chart with each hour accounted for. Not at all. (Those never worked for me anyway.)

I’m hearing that even one thing is helping. Something for them to focus on.

  • It could be a daily coffee with a friend. 
  • I’m in a group that is meeting every lunchtime over Zoom. 
  • It could be a walk around the block at the same time each day. 

Having that rhythm is helping give people a bit of stability through this. Weekly is good too. As an executive coach, I’m hearing clients appreciating the structure weekly calls give. The calls are like a rudder helping steer a ship. Or a keel helping stabilize it. (If you’d like to explore coaching, I’d be happy to!)

Daily Planning Focus Sheet

It can be friends. Or even a commitment to yourself.

That’s why so many people are finding the Daily Focus Sheet to be such a help. Just the act of jotting down the things they want to do helps them get through whatever type of day they’re having.

One FollowUp Friday subscriber told me the Daily Sheet actually helped him realize he was over doing it! His “one day” list was actually TWO days! He said he loved the clarity this process gave him in right-sizing expectations.

As you think through your follow up today, why not make it a goal to discover a daily rhythm for yourself? Feel free to try the Daily Focus Sheet if you want. You can get it at https://concordleadershipgroup.com/daily-focus/

Have you found a focus or routine that’s creating a stability giving daily rhythm? Let me know by leaving a comment below.

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