5 tips for how to show up as the leader you want to be – every day

This week’s been tough. At 3am on Thursday morning my 6-year-old daughter Kiara, during a coughing fit, shouted “Mum, you’re not focusing”, as I was trying to hold the spacer with Ventolin to her mouth to help her breathe. Feeling frustrated and exhausted, I started crying. Both of my children have asthma – which flares up at the hint of virus – and they both have colds. Nights are the worst. Some weeks through winter, I get by on little sleep. I’m used to it, but it doesn’t get easier.

No one knows the ‘stuff’ you’re dealing with

No one has an easy or perfect life. No one holds it together all the time. It’s easy to look at someone else and think you know how it is for them. What lies beneath the surface is how someone is experiencing life – not what you see on the surface.

Being a leader means showing up as the example despite your ‘stuff’ and how you feel. It makes leadership hard.

Your attitude and how you show up matters most

Life doesn’t happen to us. We choose how we experience it. What’s hard for you will be straight forward for someone else. What’s scarry for someone could be a walk in the park for you.

How are you choosing to show up in your life right now – in and out of work?

How you start your day is sets the tone for your entire day

How we start our day has a huge impact on how we experience it, as well as our happiness and wellness levels.

There’s a heap of research that supports setting up your day well: wake up early, meditate, do yoga or go for a walk, and then prepare a healthy breakfast while listening to a motivational podcast to ‘take charge of your life’. That all sounds fantastic – but it’s not realistic for everyone. What if your morning routine starts with kids waking at 6am?

Setting up your day with these 5 tips can empower you to create the kind day you want and help you bring your best, regardless of the ‘stuff’ you’ve got going on or what your morning routine is:

1. Do something in the morning that gives you pride

Kick off your day by being grateful for something. Do something that makes you feel good, like, tell someone you love them.

2. Develop a habit to set your intention

While you’re getting going for the day, ask yourself “What kind of day would I like to have today?”. “What do I want to go right in my day today?”.

3. Self-reflect on the interactions you’re going to have during the day

Ask yourself: “How do I intentionally want to show up?” “What’s the experience of me that I want to give others”?

4. Choose to be positive

It’s okay to feel that everything is not okay, you can still decide that everything is okay. The happiest people are positive about life. They see life through a lens that just a little bit more positive than others.  Most of what we worry about will never happen. Who knows what your day might bring?

5. Discern a goal for the day

Be clear about what you’re going to focus on and get done so you don’t get distracted in ‘busyness’.

Bringing it all together

How you start your day impacts the rest of your day. Every day is a choice: to get through your day or create it how you want it. It doesn’t mean you control what happens – but you do get to control the only thing you do control – you! Which of these tips could make the biggest difference to you?

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