Letter to Leaders – November 2020

Anxious much?

I can’t imagine why. After all, we just “kinda sorta” concluded the most dramatic presidential election in history. We’re **still** in the middle of the Pandemic. And let’s face it—we still don’t know when or what post-COVID looks like—for our families, colleagues, friends and work.

In trying to determine what topic to feature in my monthly leadership workshops, I focused on two things that happened to me in October:

My wife and I took a vacation to see Utah’s National Parks. It wasn’t the vacation we’d originally planned, and it involved a lot of driving. 6 days of packing and unpacking. Also, my wife made me hike. (A lot.) But—it was great! The change of scenery was what we needed. No work, no e-mails. Fresh air. When your biggest concern for a week is where to have lunch, it’s a pretty good week.

Then I had a zoom call with a client and her leadership team. The company’s CEO is one of my favorite people and favorite client—and someone whom I admire enormously. But she wasn’t the same as usual. I texted her in the middle of the call to take a day off immediately and to also take a nap.

We believe we’re OK, but we’re not. The first step to conquering stress and anxiety is to put your oxygen mask on first. Resilience begins when we have the energy to be resilient.

Worry about things you can control. TURN OFF the news (what’s going to happen is gonna happen whether you’re watching or not). Read fiction, watch dumb TV shows, get out of the house.

I didn’t realize I needed a change of scenery until I had a change of scenery.

The amount of unused vacation time in employee accounts is at an all-time high. That has to end. Leaders need to lead by example and also make employees take that valuable time. The work will remain, and no one is irreplaceable.

I was developing the theme of “anxiety” for our workshop until I realized it’s not about anxiety—it’s about defeating anxiety.

Take care and be safe – and please click here and enjoy a minute of anxiety-free time.