2020 – 10 tips to Thrive and Flourish
Jan 6th, 2020
“We need to do a better job of putting ourselves higher on our own to-do list”.
As we kick off the New Year, I find myself wrestling with two competing impulses. Work is starting up once again and my first impulse is to throw myself back into it with verve and vigour, diving into the new projects I have lined up and dealing with the items I didn’t get to on my 2019 ‘to do’ list. The other, softer voice is reminding me to retain the balance I have achieved over the Christmas break. The extra sleep, time with loved ones, and space to think, which have been so appreciated.
As ever, many of us are looking to answer a challenging question: “How do I grow, innovate and succeed in 2020, while keeping myself and my team nourished and able to sustain a balanced, energetic output throughout this year?” I advise my clients to make quiet reflective time a priority, not a luxury, and the beginning of the year is the ideal time to put it into our diaries, so we make sure we have clear breaks as the months unfold.
Why is this so important? We now live in a world of constant chatter, notifications, pings, buzzers, vibrations, screens, all competing for our attention. It’s easy to forget how to be still, easy to just keep on being busy. The Japanese character for busy is made up of two symbols: heart and loss. This eloquently identifies what happens to us when we become too busy – we have a tendency to live in our head rather than in our heart, and not allow ourself time to focus on the activities that bring us joy.
Making New Year resolutions often means adding even more to our to-do list, leaving even less time for reflection and living in our heart. This year, why not manage your resolutions differently? Remember that small consistent habits, such a 4-minute high-intensity work-out while the kettle is on in the morning, are better than a gym subscription that gets used four times in January and then never again for the rest of the year. Grand plans have a tendency to run out of steam. It’s the small changes we make that create the biggest avalanches of change in our lives, often unnoticed at the start until they become a strong life-time habit.
As the New Year begins, I’d like to share with you 10 tips that were part of an article I wrote for this week’s Prime Resi (the journal of luxury property), to help readers kick-off the start of 2020 in the healthiest way possible. They cover all-round health at work. Read on for my ideas on how you can take ownership for your own health, physical, mental and emotional, as well as that of your team, your business, your family and everyone around you.
10 Tips to Thrive and Flourish
- Provide Clarity.
At the start of the New Year, ensure your team knows its priorities. Overwhelm is common when you are juggling deadlines which will rapidly become the norm once we are all back at work. Provide clear direction on what the priorities are, as they can change. I apply the 80/20 rule. We know that 80% of income comes from 20% of your clients. In the same way, 80% of success is dependent on 20% of your activities. Give people clarity on the priorities of their role so they can influence their own success.
- Align Corporate and Personal Vision
When reviewing the vision for the business, a good thing to do at the start of each year, enquire as to the personal vision of your team members – what are their aspirations personally and professionally for 2020? When people feel known for more than their role they feel part of something and want to contribute.
- Create a Culture of Openness
If senior management share their stories and strategies of how they overcame times of adversity and stress it gives hope and normalises stress. In an Estates Gazette survey carried out last year, 40% of respondents said that they had given their employer a different reason for taking time off when they felt unable to cope, so it is imperative that we remove the stigma.
- Acknowledge Contribution and Recognise talent
The beginning of the year is a good time to acknowledge your own or your colleagues’ talents. When we are recognised for what we are good at, and our contribution is valued it increases our ambition and motivation to tackle the challenges ahead.
- Leave Space to Reflect
Don’t overcommit yourself. Leave time to reflect and plan ahead. A client, who had historically taken very little reflection time, decided to dedicate quality time to his 5-year business plan. The result is a highly creative, innovative plan with bold ideas that will reposition the brand and business, and reward employees for their commitment. This has made him realise the importance of this reflective time and it is now regularly in his diary for 2020.
- Increase Face-to-Face Communication
Meet regularly with your team members to review progress and gain their insights. A good tip to understand what people need from you is to ask simple questions which are easy to answer, e.g. what is the one thing you need from me that would make the biggest difference right now? … and act on it.
- Equip your People
Often people who are feeling anxious or depressed do not know who to ask for help and it takes real courage to talk about it. Train as many people, particularly managers, in mental health first aid. There are many programmes available.
- Set Healthy Boundaries at Home
We are all parents, husbands or wives, friends, and if we never turn our work switch off, we risk ‘contaminating’ areas in our home that are meant for social engagement, potentially damaging our important relationships. Give people your time and attention. Start by putting away your mobile or tablet when watching TV or avoiding leaving work papers on the kitchen table, and carve out specific times and a specific place when you need to work at home.
- Sleep your Way to the Top!
As Arianna Huffington reported, sufficient sleep is key to optimum performance and your success. Neuroscientists have shown that the 15 minutes before we go to sleep are our most creative time, so spend them wisely – for example, acknowledging what you have achieved or what you are grateful for
- Do What You Love
Make your well-being a priority for 2020. Prioritise the activities that give you joy and pleasure and it will give you the energy to fuel your ambitions and make this year one of your best! Book them in your 2020 calendar now for the whole year!
Find Out More
Are you ready to build a strategy to help you and your organisation to thrive and flourish? If so, begin the conversation by emailing Oona at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you would like to know more about what our clients have gained from our coaching we have lots of testimonials that you might find interesting.
Sign up to our Leadership Insights & Articles here.