Leadership Tip #5: Self-Care Will Make You A Better Leader

I read a quote that said “Leaders care more about others than they do themselves”, and while I appreciate the intention behind the quote, I believe it’s important to dive a little deeper. I’ve witnessed amazing individuals give so much of themselves that they didn’t have anything left to give others. As a result, they burned out, got sick or just decided to check out. They learned the hard way that in order to have anything to give to others, you must first give to yourself.

This topic of taking care of yourself first usually results in some interesting discussions because it can rub up against our belief systems. Many of us were taught that it is selfish to take care of ourselves first. I offer that it’s actually selfish NOT to take care of you first. Let’s put some context around this as it pertains to being an effective leader, whether leading at work or at home.

If you don’t take care of yourself and you get sick, you won’t be available to support your team or family.

If you don’t take care of yourself, you are teaching others that they don’t need to take care of themselves. How will they know what this should look like if you don’t show them?

If you don’t take care of yourself you are telling yourself that everyone else is more important than you and you are teaching that same lesson to others.

Conversely, when you take care of yourself you will have the energy to care for and support others when they need you.

When you take care of yourself you are being the role model for others to follow.

When you take care of yourself you are telling yourself that you are important and can then help others see their value and worth.

Here are ten ways to incorporate more self-care into your life to become a better leader.

  1. Exercise
  2. Meditate
  3. Eat and drink healthy
  4. Spend time in nature
  5. Get plenty of good sleep
  6. Spend time with positive friends
  7. Get a massage
  8. Practice mindfulness, staying in the moment
  9. Keep a gratitude journal
  10. Read/Listen to a positive book

BONUS: Practice positive self-talk. Be your own BFF!

Once you’ve filled yourself up, go and FREELY give away your positivity, support, JOY and love to everyone in your life. You can only give away what you’ve received for yourself.

What is one thing you can do today to take better care of you? Do that and then pick one more thing!