Seemingly small habits (which admittedly aren’t sexy and are even a bit boring) that focus your time, energy and effort, will create exponential incremental returns on your performance and leadership. In thinking about the daily habits that, for my recent clients, have ‘game changed’ their productivity and leadership, the feedback from these clients confirmed building these daily habits will change the way you show up as a leader and colleague.
1. Set your day up – choose your focus (or others will choose it for you)
Before your day kicks off ask yourself:
- What are my top 5 tasks for the day I must complete to keep me on track (in line with my weekly/90 day plan)?
- Who do I need to support/guide/coach/ be there for today?
- Who do I want to acknowledge for their effort and contribution and how can I do this in a way they ‘really get’ how valued they are?
2. Decide how you will show up – regardless of what happens
Your attitude is always on display – in everything you say, do, and what your body language reveals. The more you’re aware of your emotional state and what’s driving it, the greater control you have over your emotions and your ability to influence the outcomes you’re seeking. Decide to be:
- Curious – to learn and understand
- Open – to hear diverse perspectives
- Judgment free – to listen without judging (as good/bad, right/wrong, us/them)
- Grateful – to appreciate everyone makes a unique contribution – even if you don’t agree with it
3. Make every meeting purposeful
Here are 4 key steps:
- Align on the purpose and time allocation
- Agree on the criteria by which decisions will be made
- Move the conversation on if the detail isn’t necessary
- Seek commitments when decisions are made.
4. Engage in quality self-reflection
Take time every day to reflect resourcefully so you can choose your perspective (consider your assumptions, choices and consequences) so your approach and criteria for decision making are clear.
5. Look after you
Lifting your game often means taking better care of you – your health, your mindset, and taking time to relax and recharge. Know what needs to be in place so you can take care of you consistently – otherwise, everything else is at risk. If you are experiencing overwhelm, anxiety, stress, or you’re feeling worn out – it will be impacting you more than you think. Do something each day to acknowledge the value you place on you. Ensure your self-talk focuses on lifting you up rather than putting you down.
Ultimately, successful people have successful habits – it’s that black and white. What new habits are you going to commit to?