Your 2020 Personal Guide to Thrive

If you ask any leader, they will tell you how rewarding it is to see their team grow and accomplish their goals. 
There is a certain pride that is gained when you inspire and motivate others. 
Then there is the reality of leadership.
Leadership requires responsibility and accountability. With today’s business challenges, this is far from easy. Leaders are teetering at their edge of growth, sometimes barely hanging on.  As you progress in your career, the challenges become increasingly complex and ambiguous.  All the while trying to manage your own doubt, sleepless nights, and personal life. 
2020 may be the start of a new year, a new decade or just another day; however you view it, let’s prepare you to thrive, aspire and inspire change.  
Who you are is how you lead. Let’s start with the who that is you. 
  • Make yourself a priority. "Put your air mask on first." "You can’t pour from an empty cup." By taking care of yourself, you are nourishing your most precious resource— you. Invest in yourself by taking time for self care, personal development, time for reflection and a good night of sleep. 
  • Simplify. What are the top 5 priorities in your life that you are willing to invest your time, energy, and money on? You are a priority, so there are 4 more to decide on. Drop the rest. Learn to say no and focus on what’s most important to you. 
  • Define success for yourself. Everyone will want to define what success is for you. Stop and define success for yourself. When you are on your deathbed looking back at your life, what will constitute a life well lived and loved? Let that be your compass for joy. 
  • Say yes to you, by learning to say no. Remember your list of priorities? Every time you say no to something, you say yes to your priorities. 
  • Drop expectations, create agreements. Let go of expectations. Of yourself, of others, and of the world. Expectations paint us into a box of shoulds that no one can live up too. There is no ideal. There is no should. By dropping expectations we cultivate our ability to be with ambiguity, to delight in what happens during the day. On the other hand, agreements require us to engage in the world and ask for what we want.
  • Choose courage. In action, in conversation, in thought. Fear tries to persuade you to not do what you want to do. Courage wants what you want. Risk not belonging, not being right. People of integrity and authenticity are more influential and confident than those who sit in a meeting watching the elephant in the room sit on the conversation.
  • Respect your feelings. We are emotional creatures. We can’t control it. Let yourself feel. Your feelings are a gift, a strength. Use it.
  • What do you want? At any moment do you know what you want? Make it a practice to know yourself and what you need and want, then ask why 5 times. So many of us have beliefs wrapped up around wanting, getting what we want, not being able to want. Let’s talk about what we want. You may be surprised by what you really want.
  • Believe things that delight you. You know the smile that creeps into your eyes when you see a silly puppy or goat video on youtube. I watched my cousin’s dog bark at a paper bag for 2 minutes attacking the handle over and over. I doubled over with laughter and delight. That felt good! If you don’t delight in a belief find a new one to replace it. I’m not good enough doesn’t feel good. Personally, it makes my stomach sour. That’s how I know it’s not true. Find a new belief. Tip.. the new belief isn’t just an affirmation and a flip of the old belief. It’s something that will light you up to make you wonder. 
  • Find wonder & wander daily. Unless you are fasting, most of us need to drink and eat water every day. We turn to tv, alcohol, working out and so many other things to cope with life. Our souls need delight and wonder. We need to wander outside with no agenda, not tracking if we hit our 10k goal. 
  • Take your foot off the brake. When you decide on a change and get flustered that it doesn’t happen look at two things, your identity, and competing commitments. The key to long term change usually lies in our beliefs, our identity, competing commitments, and our environment.
  • Ask for help. You don’t have to know everything. You don’t have to be perfect. You don’t have to do it alone. Ask for help. People love to help. People want to help.

About the Author

Kim-Elisha Proctor is an Executive Coach, teacher, and writer. For over 15 years, she has worked with companies at all stages of growth and understands the complexity of organizations and leadership that is needed for success. Whether one-on-one coaching, with groups or delivering leadership development programs, her passion is the same: to support leaders to enhance their performance, impact, purpose & well-being to create communities they long to belong to.

Kim-ElishaAgency, Create & Navigate Change, Personal Musings, Well-being