Dr. Rita's Blog
It's Fall in Minnesota and orange, red and yellow leaves are everywhere. I live in Minneapolis, less than a block from the Mississippi River, and drive over the Lake Street bridge almost daily. There are times when the setting sun lights up the trees in a way that is 'stop in your tracks' breathtakingly beautiful. I remind myself to appreciate every tree and every moment of awe because all too soon those leaves fall to the ground.
Is it time?
Today as I was reflecting on writing to you, I thought about the leaves dropping. Then was reminded of how smart those trees are. They know when they no longer need leaves and they listen to Mother Nature when she says "time to let go!"
As leaders we don't have nature signaling us the same way the trees do. We do have signals, though trying to get our attention that it's time to drop some things. That signal for most of us is stress which can show up as pits in the bottom of our stomachs, headaches, procrastination, backaches, short tempers, insomnia, and more.
Stop. Reflect. Re-evaluate.
When these signals make themselves known to us, it's time to STOP. Reflect and re-evaluate. Time to ask ourselves "What can I drop?"
Maybe every email doesn't need responding to, maybe you can delegate more to your team, maybe you can say 'no' more often or maybe you can be more deliberate in focusing on the 'important but not urgent' things.
Will you be surprised?
Try this experiment that I often challenge my coaching clients to do: Stop doing some things that are not absolutely important. Then wait and see what happens. If you're like many of my clients, you may be surprised at how many things you have on your to-do list that don't really need to be there.
Have the courage to be like the trees this Fall and drop the things you no longer need. These could also be mental things such as negative thinking patterns, or habitual worry and perfectionism.
What perspective are you holding?
We often don't realize it, but we create our own stress by the perspective we hold about the things happening in our lives. And when that stress is negative, it creates a heavy load that makes most everything less satisfying. We are always at choice with the thoughts we think
Just do it!
So, lighten your load! Actively assess the things you're doing and experiment with dropping one or two (or a few more) and see what happens. You may just find yourself in a place of awe! And with time to do more of what has meaning in your life.
If you need a reminder, print out the leaf photos from this newsletter and put them in a place where you will see them regularly.
I'd love to hear how it goes for you. Please get in touch and let me know.
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