Leaders are “on” all the time.  This can be a great thing when your energy is high and you feel engaged and focused.  But sooner or later burnout creeps in.  Whether it’s from working too hard or juggling too many things or just getting bogged down in a tough patch, we all go through periods where our energy drops and even small tasks seem like huge mountains.

How do you recharge?  Where do you go to rekindle your inner leader and find the energy you need?  Different people need to do different things when they feel stressed and worn down.  Here are some things that I do but I’d love to hear what ideas you have:

  • Change it up – Sometimes you need to change your routine to get a fresh perspective.  Try taking your laptop and sitting in a conference room or at an empty desk if you work in an office.  If you work from home, head down to the local coffee house or to a co-working space.
  • Take a day (or two) off – Take a real day to yourself.  Don’t do chores, don’t read email, disconnect completely and go for a walk outside or visit an art museum.  Take a whole day (more if you can spare the time) and let your mind relax.
  • Talk to someone – Schedule some lunches or coffees or dinners with some close friends and ask them to let you tell them what’s on your mind.  Sometimes you need to talk through some of the things that are frustrating you and it’s best to do that with someone who’s totally outside the situation.  That way you can feel totally free to be honest and not worry that it will get back to your team or your colleagues in a negative way.
  • Take care of yourself – If you feel run down, it might be physical vs. mental.  Take care of yourself, eat right and exercise.  Make sure you’re sleeping enough.  If you don’t have physical energy, you can’t bring your A game, so follow your mother’s good advice and eat your veggies!

What do you do when you feel spent?  How do you get back in touch with the energy you need to lead your team?


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