When you just *can’t*

Photo of a person lying down, ground level, feet firstLeaders are supposed to keep on keeping on.

They’re supposed to make decisions, offer support, give feedback, notice who’s struggling, catch all the balls, help their teams through burnout, keep projects on track, stagger out of the office and deal with the kids, the dog, the cat, the partner, the family, the friends, the neighbors …

Shall I stop now?

Because really, it’s endless. For everyone, and especially for leaders.

And because we’ve swallowed so much cultural “stuff” about what it means to be a leader, we think we really do have to just keep on keeping on.

Even when we’re running on the fumes of fumes.

It’s okay to say I can’t

It’s okay to press pause.

It’s okay to step back.

It’s okay to take many moments to regroup, reground, and refill.

In fact, it’s essential.

Even if you believe you can’t pause, step back, take those moments, you really probably can. Somehow, some way, you can. Because ultimately, you must.

This isn’t about …

I’m frankly sick of – and a little angry at – the endless memes and posts and podcasts and books talking about bubble baths and walking in nature and whatever.

These aren’t necessarily what restores people. They aren’t always available to people. Not everyone can hop out their front door and take a “walk in nature,” for any number of reasons.

It IS about you

And yes, it’s One More Damn Thing To DO: figure out what restores you.

Figure out what makes you feel good.

In the long term as well as right now.

And then, for the love of all you hold holy and dear, go do it. In the long term as well as right now.

Because you can do it – you can find a way – and you must, if you’re going to be able to keep on keeping on as the leader you want to be.

Parting thought

Seen on Facebook from “the Cryptonaturalist”:

Being indoors does not remove you from nature, in much the same way that closing your eyes does not make you invisible.


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gljudson Self-awareness