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Leadership Today - Practical Tips For Leaders

Apr 28, 2020

Welcome to Midweek Motivate. This week we’re looking at some quick wins around physical health.

Physical health is a core part of not just our well-being, but our effectiveness as leaders. Research into maintaining our mental capacity into older age repeatedly returns to the importance of diet, exercise and sleep. 

But we know all this don’t we? But if it’s that easy, why do so many of us struggle with poor physical health. Here are some rapid-fire ideas to try for yourself and share with your team members.

Let’s start with diet. One key concept when it comes to diet is to think replacement instead of removal. Diets often fail because we focus too much on what we’re losing. I can’t eat donuts anymore. There goes potatoes. Whatever it might be - we pull things from our diet, while not focusing on replacing them with something new. So if you’re giving up a muffin, maybe you can replace that with some fruit or nuts that you like. And keep it fresh in both senses of the expression. Hang around the fresh food section of the supermarket and fill your trolley with things that go off. And keep it fresh by trying new things.

On exercise, make things a habit rather than a choice. Build it into your daily routine. Maybe park further away from work. Get back to nature - don’t just go outside, but find a park or somewhere with trees as this has a greater benefit on our well-being. And find the joy in exercise. Do what you enjoy doing. Maybe you love catching up with a friend. Why not do that over a walk instead of over a coffee.

When it comes to sleep, maintaining regular times to go to bed and wake up is really important. Include some wind down time device free - an hour should be enough. And keep a note pad next to your bed. That way, if you wake up with some great new idea or something troubling you, you can note it down and go back to sleep. Otherwise your brain might continue to loop on that idea in an attempt to not forget it. Writing it down ticks the box for our brain that the idea is important, while also letting us get back to sleep.

Give a couple of these ideas around physical health a try this week, and make sure you share it with your team. Have a great week.