In today’s fast-paced world, it’s easy for leaders in business to get caught up in the demands of their work and let their personal lives suffer. I mean, we have a lot going on, right? Working full-time, taking care of children (and perhaps even parents), community obligations, and the hard times of life that come with death, divorce, or disease.
But instead of seeing these as obstacles to living an integrated life, I see them as the reasons that we must do so.
Research has shown that leaders who live an integrated life are not only happier but also more successful in their careers. One such study was conducted by Harvard Business School in 2014, which found that leaders who prioritize their personal lives and spend more time with their families and hobbies are more productive at work. The study also found that these leaders are more likely to feel fulfilled in their personal lives, which can lead to higher job satisfaction and better work performance.
Another study conducted by the Center for Creative Leadership in 2016 found that leaders who have a strong sense of work-life balance are more likely to be effective in their roles. The study found that these leaders are better able to manage their stress levels, maintain healthy relationships with their colleagues, and lead their teams with greater clarity and focus.
So, let’s explore what it means to live an integrated life, why it’s important for leaders, and how busy leaders can achieve a better sense of harmony between professional success and personal fulfillment.
What is Living an Integrated Life?
Living an integrated life means finding a harmonious flow between work and personal life. It means that you’re not sacrificing one for the other but rather integrating both into your daily routine. It’s about recognizing that your personal life is just as important as your work life, and both need to be given the time and attention they deserve.
Why is it Important for Leaders?
As a leader, living an integrated life is essential for many reasons. The first and most important, in my opinion, is that it helps to reduce stress and burnout, which can have a huge negative impact on your health and well-being. When you’re not constantly juggling work and personal commitments, you can focus better on both areas of your life. Secondly, it sets a positive example for your team. When your team sees that you prioritize your personal life, they are more likely to do the same. This can lead to a more motivated and engaged workforce, which ultimately translates into better business results.
How can it be achieved as a Busy Leader?
As a busy leader, achieving a more integrated life can seem like an impossible task. However, there are several strategies that can help you achieve this balance:
- Set Boundaries: Setting boundaries between work and personal life is crucial. Try to establish specific times when you’ll be available for work-related matters and when you’ll be focusing on your personal life. Stick to these boundaries as much as possible.
- Prioritize: Make a list of the most important things in your life, both personal and work-related. This can help you identify where to focus your time and energy.
- Schedule Time for Personal Activities: Just like you schedule time for work-related activities, schedule time for personal activities as well. This can be anything from spending time with family and friends to pursuing a hobby or taking a fitness class.
- Delegate: Delegating tasks to others can free up time for you to focus on other things. This can be particularly helpful if you’re feeling overwhelmed with work-related responsibilities.
Living an integrated life is essential for leaders who want to achieve long-term success in both their personal and professional lives. It’s about finding a flow between the two and prioritizing what’s important.
Here’s the deal, though, it starts with a choice. Yours. While it can be challenging to achieve as a busy leader, setting boundaries, prioritizing, scheduling personal time, and delegating can help make it more manageable. By living an integrated life, you get to lead with more purpose and inspire your teams to do the same.