Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Leadership and Discouragement

Have you ever been discouraged as a leader?  Of course you have.  Here are some facts about discouragement.

1. Everyone Gets Discouraged.
Leaders are not immune from discouragement.

2. Discouragement is Contagious.
We all know what it is like to get around a discouraged person.  It pulls us down as well.  When you get discouraged as a leader, it can affect those you lead.

3. Discouragement Keeps Us From Being Effective.
When we are discouraged we are not what we could be.  We are not operating at 100% for those around us (our families, our co-workers, etc).  This is because discouragement causes us to focus on our self instead of those we are leading.  Discouragement causes us to take our eyes off of our goals, our dreams, our priorities.  It also causes us to take our eyes of the needs of those who are following us.

Following are some tips for dealing with discouragement as leaders.

1) Determine what is causing you to be discouraged. 
This may sound simplistic but many people feel discouraged and do not know why.  Identify the source of the discouragement so that you can determine what you need to do next.

2) Determine what you can and cannot control about the cause of your discouragement.

3) Take action on the things that you can control.
Ask yourself, "What could I do differently than I have done to this point to overcome this obstacle."  “What can I do now to change what is causing my discouragement?”

4) Eat right, rest, and exercise.
It is amazing how your physical health affects your emotional and mental health.

5) Encourage others.
When you encourage others, you find that the words of encouragement you give to them encourage you as well.

6) Count your blessings. 
Make a list of all the things for which you are grateful.  Often times, we focus on the one thing that’s wrong and overlook the ninety-nine things that are going well.  When you make a conscious effort to write down what’s good in your life, it helps you to put things into perspective.