How to Be A Mindful Leader

Let’s start with defining mindful. Merriam-Webster defines mindful as: bearing in mind: aware or inclined to be aware. Another way to think of mindful is showing compassion, being able to see the other’s point of view all while reducing your stress and theirs. When you show up as a stressed leader, that has an effect on your team and organization leading to a lack of respect, being seen as ineffective or worse harmful with the outcome of the eventual loss of employees. A 2017 survey showed that only 7 percent of those surveyed believe that their stressed leaders effectively lead their teams and only 11 percent of employees with stressed leaders are highly engaged at work. If you are showing up stressed all the time, that has a huge impact on your team and organization. One of the best ways of managing your stress is through being mindful.

Use these strategies to be a mindful leader while reducing stress and greater job satisfaction for you and your team.

  • Self-awareness. This will allow you to be in better touch with your behavior and how you are reacting during meetings, one-on-ones, even walking down the hallway.
  • Active listening. Lean in and really listen to what the person is saying, rather than starting to listen and then go right to figuring out what you will say back.
  • Acknowledge what you heard. By acknowledging what you heard the other person say, you help eliminate any misunderstandings. “This is what I heard you say. Is that right?”
  • Schedule downtime. Be sure and schedule time throughout your day to help recharge and reset.
  • Check-in with yourself emotionally. Pause and check-in with how you are feeling before entering a meeting or room. This allows you to be aware of how you will be showing up before any meeting or interaction.

Everything starts with you as the leader. Being a mindful leader helps you lead with inspiration and integrity all while creating an engaged team. Help yourself and others to feel more connected and fulfilled.

Please share how you manage stress and show up as a mindful leader in the comments below.

If you would like help tweaking how you show up as a leader, please reach out!