How can you give to others what you have not given yourself?
How can you give to others what you have not given yourself? This is something I have been asking people recently, and more importantly leaders. The “why” or purpose of most leaders I have spent time with is to serve others. That is what leaders do — well, the good ones. They serve others, they influence, and guide. This leaves me with my original question: how can you give what you have not given yourself?
Because these leaders focus so much on others, they in turn are not taking the time or giving themselves the space to grow. We can only give what we have. If we want to show up for our people, help them grow, and achieve all their goals, then we must show up for ourselves first. We must put ourselves at the top of the list of priorities. In this case, it is selfless to be selfish.
“We must put ourselves at the top of the list of priorities. In this case, it is selfless to be selfish.”
How do you take care of yourself? How much time are you investing in your personal growth? When and where do you do this? What areas are YOU focused on? A lot of leaders I speak with do not have answers to these questions, and that is where we need to start. There needs to be a shift in the mindset of leaders and organizations surrounding how we develop our leaders and how leaders develop themselves. If leaders put a focus on their growth, then they will have more to give to those they lead. It takes an immense amount of energy to be a leader. You give so much, you are there for your people, and they need a lot from you. But we only have so much to give–there is a breaking point. The way to recover, the way to restore, and build up that energy is through personal growth. It is through leaders developing themselves.
Personal growth of leaders serves two purposes that I mentioned above:
- The more leaders grow themselves, the more information and knowledge they must give to their people
- Leadership takes a lot of energy, and we must as leaders restore that energy daily.
So, what will you do for yourself today? Where are YOU trying to grow? What follows once you answer these questions is building habits, routines, and structure to make sure we incorporate this daily. This is a major shift in mindset for some leaders. But it is an essential shift that I know will not only help leaders as individuals, but in turn will help them to create more impact for the people they lead.
If you truly want to impact a team, your family, or just an individual, don’t you want to give them the best version of yourself? If you get your high from serving others, imagine the high you will get when what you are giving them is more than you ever imagined? This is the power of personal growth. This is the power of taking care of yourself. It allows you to take care of others.
Written by Jarrod Sammet
Photo by Anton Darius on Unsplash