How can I improve my attitude?
Good habits establish your priorities for the day. Self-discipline has a ripple effect that sets the wheels in motion for better leadership. Habits are all about discipline. The best habits almost always require a substantial commitment to move against the flow. Over time, habits, both good and bad, can become “second nature.”
Think about good habits in your life that require very little premeditation. When you sit down in a car, you fasten your seatbelt. When a server fills your glass, you say, “Thank you. ”When you leave home, you embrace your spouse or children and say, “I love you.” What is true of good habits is also true of bad habits. Each of us struggles to overcome certain behaviors and reactions that can occur without forethought. Defeating the bad begins with the good. Strategic investment in good habits empowers you to break the bad ones.
There are three habits that can provide substantial impact on your Attitude, your Execution and pave the way for Transformation. Here are three leadership habits that will change your day:
Gratitude. Your attitude touches everything you do and say. If there’s one habit that amplifies your impact as a leader, it is attitude. So what is the best habit to nourish a positive attitude? It’s gratitude. In life, you will have many opportunities to step into the spotlight and draw attention to yourself and your accomplishments. You will also have many opportunities to recognize others and show appreciation for contributions that can easily go unseen and unrecognized. Step aside and make room in the spotlight for others. Recognition is preceded by genuine gratitude. Gratitude is a daily choice. It’s a good habit that will produce a healthier attitude. Try this tomorrow. Before your feet hit the floor in the morning, give thanks for another day.
Patience. The incline toward good habits just got a little steeper. The pace of leadership can be frenetic and relentless. Patience is tough. It may be the hardest habit to practice. But, that’s a good indication that it can also be most important. One of the most important realms to practice patience has to do with stitching together patience and responding to a barrage of messages. Think before you speak. Pause before you hit send, text or call. Your “fight or flight” response rages against patience. Remember, good habits require self-control. So what’s the ROI on patience? Fortunately, there is a substantial return on your investment. Establishing patience as a way of life is rewarding both personally and professionally. When you wait before you conclude, you will have the opportunity to provide a thoughtful more appropriate response. At first, you may protest. Patience may sound like a bad habit wrapped up in a good one. There’s another “P” word that is a leadership nemesis. It’s procrastination. Patience and procrastination do not belong in the same class. Patience is intentional, disciplined self-control. It is connected to peace, not procrastination. Before you act or speak, clarify your emotions and the information in your mental inbox. Then move forward. Effective execution requires an intentional, disciplined response.
Reflection. It seems to be rampant. Sleep deprived leaders have no time or energy left to reflect. It’s just not a priority. If you’re too tired or too busy, reflection seems like a waste of time. Is it? If you’re serious about leadership transformation, you need to revisit your top ten list of priorities. Is it possible to learn from your mistakes without disciplined reflection? Much of leadership takes place beneath the surface. It may be easy to do a quick review of outward performance with corresponding metrics as your guide, but digging deep into your beliefs and values is not a quick exercise. Developing authenticity requires introspection. Reflection is the key to self-examination and self-awareness. Ultimately, leadership transformation requires mindfulness. Refine your level of awareness by scheduling time for quiet reflection. Begin the habit this week. Add a time slot for reflection to your calendar tomorrow.