I recently facilitated a Leadership Retreat at a beautiful ocean and beach resort for the Managing Partners of a law firm. We focused a great deal on improving their emotional intelligence-based leadership skills including self-awareness and creating more work/life balance.
The legal profession is a highly rewarding, but increasingly demanding profession. Managing partners are often stressed out and some burned out. One of the partners shared that he was in a perpetual state of “fight or flight”. He had little time for himself or his family.
During the three day retreat, we engaged in some very powerful exercises where each participant reflected on the beliefs or stories he or she had regarding work/life balance. The partners then spent some time writing a new story envisioning both a personal and work life that prevented burnout and promoted well-being. Each person created a Leadership Development Action Plan with specific action steps and accountability to improve desired behaviors.
To generate the energy you need to fulfill your greatest desires and goals, you must identify your faulty stories—the erroneous old chestnuts that you tell yourself over and over again. We rarely examine them or question their usefulness. We simply go about our workdays and lives, telling ourselves these familiar tales to convince ourselves that we’re OK.
Answer the following questions to determine whether your stories are working to your advantage:
1. Do you feel energized?
2. Are you managing your time well?
3. Do you get things done?
4. Are you living the life you dreamed?
If you have answered “no” to any of these questions, then your stories aren’t working for you. Now’s the time to develop a story that compels you and improves your energy.
Are you working in a professional services firm or other organization where executive coaches provide leadership development for emotionally intelligent leaders? Does your organization provide executive coaching to help leaders develop executive presence? Leaders with highly developed executive presence tap into their emotional intelligence and social intelligence skills to fully engage employees and customers.
One of the most powerful questions you can ask yourself is “What are my faulty stories that I tell myself self over and over again?” Emotionally intelligent and socially intelligent organizations provide executive coaching for collaborative leaders who value work/life balance.