More Than A Resume

I read 22 resumes this weekend.

22 people trying to out-resume each other.

All amazingly alike.

Full of useful data.

And still I was left wondering,

Who are you?


Forget the job history.

The education.

The accomplishments.

Let’s talk about the rest of you.

The best of you.

Your heart.

Your wisdom.

Your personality.

Your story.

Your priorities.

Your gifts.

Your wounds.

Your imagination.

Your dreams.

No one else brings what you bring.

Sees the world the way you do.

Or holds the same potential.

In a world obsessed with comparisons.

Followers and Likes.

Thought Leaders and Celebrities.

It’s tempting to downplay your value.

To measure your worth based on your résumé.

Collecting impressive stats.

Trying to keep score.

To keep up.

To fit in.

To win approval.

There is more to you than what’s on that piece of paper.

Or a LinkedIn profile.

Not everyone will appreciate you.

Who you are.

What makes you unique.

But someone will.

Keep searching.

Keep stretching.

Don’t give up.

Don’t hide.

Or try to be someone else.

Become the person you were meant to be.

Do the things you were meant to do.

Show us who you are.

Work, lead, learn, grow and keep going.

Because the world doesn’t need leaders with better resumes.

The world needs more leaders who bring their souls to work.

Who express their unique vision, creativity, and passion.

And inspire us all.

To do the same.

Towing a Yacht With a Prius

iphone-low-battery

Energy.

Emotional energy.

Creative energy.

Physical energy.

Mental energy.

 

Every day organizations spend an enormous amount of energy.

But on what?

We withhold or release our energy.

But for what?

There’s only so much energy available to each of us.

And, of course, that means only so much energy available for our organization.

Now – where is it going?

Where

           is 

                   it 

                        going?

Think about it.

Seriously.

What percentage of your energy or your organization’s energy is spent each day on the things that matter most? The things that move you forward?

80%?

50%?

20%?

I’m really curious about this question.

 

Over the years, I’ve seen enormous amounts of energy wasted on things that give so little to the cause. I’m guessing you have to.

Here are a few of the energy leaks on my list:

  • Needless meetings
  • Unnecessary rules
  • Filling out forms
  • Micromanagement
  • Turf wars
  • Committees
  • Performance reviews
  • Avoidable rework
  • Outdated procedures
  • Useless reports
  • Interpersonal drama

I could go on. What would you add?

It’s like you’re towing a yacht with a Prius. A Prius is a great, reliable, energy-efficient car, but attach a 50-foot boat to it and well, it might get along for a while as long as there are no inclines anywhere along the route you’re taking.

I think you get the picture.

So perhaps that’s a little extreme but consider how much energy is being consumed by the extra baggage in your work?

 

I think one of the most important things leaders do is pay attention to the energy in the organization.

They start by paying attention to their own energy.

What gets your energy?

Who gets your energy?

How do you manage your energy?

From this awareness, you can observe where the energy is flowing in your team.

  • Energy spent on the work.
  • Energy spent on innovating.
  • Energy spent on building relationships.
  • Energy spent on growth.
  • Energy spent on problems.
  • Energy spent on worry.
  • Energy spent on busy work.
  • Energy spent on complaining.

And so on.

Why is this important?

Because where attention goes, energy flows.

 

As a leader, you are in a unique position to influence organizational energy.

To remove the restrictions.

Eliminate the waste.

Lighten the load.

Organizations that manage energy well have a distinct advantage.

They respond more quickly.

Operate more efficiently.

Adapt more easily.

They’re healthier.

This isn’t something you can monitor once in a while.

It needs constant attention.

You check the battery level on your smartphone 10 times a day.

Make it a habit to check the energy level and flow in your organization.

Maybe it’s time to turn off some things that are no longer useful.

Permission to Pause

flowers

“If, then, I were asked for the most important advice I could give, that which I considered to be the most useful to the men of our century, I should simply say: in the name of God, stop a moment, cease your work, look around you.” ~ Leo Tolstoy


One of the greatest gifts we can give ourselves is the permission to pause.

To lift our heads from the work that occupies our waking moments.

To give our minds a rest from the endless internal dialogue .

A moment to see, to breathe, to be, to rest.

Easier said than done you say?

You must give yourself permission.

An act of self-care.

Self-love.

The world will not end while you’re gone.

The pending requests can wait,

A little while longer.

They’ll be just fine.

Break the trance.

Take a moment.

This moment.


Our ego resists the call to pause. It urges us on with fears of missing out or losing momentum.

This can be a particular challenge for leaders who not only feel the pressure to perform from above but the responsibility to come through for those they lead. Add to this the demands of personal and family life, the pull of our internet / social media impulses and fear of falling behind and we are easily trapped.

Before we know it the days and years have passed us by.

Thousands of moments unnoticed.

We might as well walk through life wearing a blindfold.

Oblivious to all the important and beautiful things around us.

Lost in a fog.


Be intentional.

Practice getting up, walking away, stepping outside.

Refresh your mind, your heart, your spirit.

Stop.

And look around.

You may be surprised at what you’ve been missing.

And what you’ve been missing might just be the thing you, and the people you love and serve, need the most.


And on that note, I’m giving myself permission to take an extended pause for travel overseas. A time to rest and clear my mind. I will not be posting to this blog for the next 30 days. I’ll be back at it the week of June 13.  It’s a hard thing for me to do but I know it’s what I need. I am deeply grateful for all who follow and support this work and I look forward to sharing with you again when I return. I believe that my time away will make space for new stories, ideas, and inspiration. I hope to see you then.

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