Leadership Lesson: how to enjoy the fruits of your labor.
Back story: Last week, I was part of a three day event that I had been working on since January. It all came together magically, was a lot of fun, and very rewarding. As I kicked off this week with my blackboard quote, I wrote “Well done. Enjoy!” It was my way of acknowledging the hard work of my fellow twin moms and to anyone else out there that had finished a huge project they had been working.
As the week continued on, I realized I needed that quote to remind me to slow down and not move on to the next project. I needed to let myself feel the emotions that come with finishing a huge project/achievement. I needed a mental break. When Wednesday rolled around, I didn’t want to change my quote. I was still a bit tired. I felt I had done enough for the moment. And seeing that quote was helping. Now it is Friday, and I’m leaving it up for the weekend. I’ve decided to stay in “Vacation Mode”.
Step 1) Decided if you are in “Work mode”-have a major project that is keeping your mind busy and your desk a mess. Or “Vacation Mode”-you have finished that huge project and are taking it all in.
Step 2) For those in “Work Mode” go to your calendar and circle the day the project is due. Then go back and see if you can find a 1/2 way point. After you do that, look at the week after the project is due and see where you can schedule a day off or a free morning or free afternoon.
For those in “Vacation Mode”, I want you to look outside. I want you to think about a book you want to read, or a place you want to visit. Maybe it is a park. Or your favorite cafe for lunch with a friend. Now, I want you to imagine when you can go. Maybe it is later today. Maybe it is tonight.
Step 3) Now, I want both groups to close your eyes and think about what this large project/achievement means to you. After you open your eyes, either write down what you hope to gain from your hard work. Maybe even a quick to do list. For those who have finished. Write down what you learned and what you are most proud of. Now close up those notes and sit back. Take a deep breathe. And be proud. Be complete.
Lesson: My experience has taught me, when you take on any large project or finish a huge achievement, it is super easy to move on to the next one. For some reason, our minds tend to keep moving, keep planning. And then we miss the moments when we are full. When we feel pride, achievement, blessed. Those feelings can come when you let your mind rest. Give yourself that week, maybe 2 weeks. Maybe a month. Even that day off before you jump right into the next large project. That next task. Give yourself however long you need to feel full from your work. The leadership lesson to be learned is great leaders know the importance of gaining the most from their hard work. Especially when it is done.