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How accountable are you for self-care?

| by Mark Deterding

I have seen a sign at a health club that says, “The greatest gift that you can give your family is your own health.” As a servant leader, it is also the greatest gift that you can give your team.

I am a great believer in “extreme self-care” to enable leaders to be fully present and deliver peak performance in all situations to those they serve. Extreme self-care for the servant leader is not only a matter of the body, but of the mind and spirit as well. 

Leading a fully engaged life begins with a multi-coordinated focus on your life’s worth.

What do your priorities look like?

  • Relationships matter more than anything (inspiring results from this 75-year Harvard study)
  • Health determines the quality of your life (exercise, nutrition and rest)
  • Work gives voice to your giftedness (live in your strengths)
  • Hobbies engage your energy beyond work (take time to enjoy things away from work)
  • Learning animates your imagination (have a passion for personal development)
  • Faith gives your life purpose (allow Jesus to guide your way)

Each of these areas requires intentional focus to nurture at the highest level. This is easier said than done. You have a great deal on your plate between your personal, family and work obligations, so finding time to properly care for these key areas of extreme self-care can be challenging.

But here is the deal. We all have the same amount of time. You have 24 hours to use every day. How you utilize that 24 is an indication of your priorities. You must prioritize and carve out time for initiatives to insure you are taking care of yourself.

Build a plan to accomplish your extreme self-care initiatives

  • Document your ideal state (vision) in each of these key areas of self-care.
  • Assess the gap between your vision and your current reality in each area.
  • Set short-term and long-term goals to move you from your current reality to your vision.
  • Bring a coach or an accountability partner into your life to help you insure you achieve results on your goals.
  • Celebrate your successes of progress on a consistent basis.

So what are you waiting for? The longer you put off this important work, the further behind you are falling on your self-care initiatives. Commit to building your extreme self-care vision, as well as bringing in an accountability partner. It will be the start of giving your family and co-workers a great gift!

Photo source: istock 

Mark Deterding

Mark Deterding is the founder and principal of Triune Leadership Services, LLC. In 2011 he formed Triune Leadership Services to follow his passion of working with leaders to help them develop core servant leadership capabilities that allow them to lead at a higher level and enable them to achieve their God-given potential. He is married to his wife Kim, and they have two sons, two lovely daughter-in-laws, and three wonderful grandchildren.

This article was first published on Used with permission. 

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