How do you balance taking care of yourself and others without sacrificing your dreams or suffering burning out? Here are four strategies:
1. Focus on your circle of influence:
With all the texts, emails and requests you get every day, it can feel like you have to reply to everybody. But you don’t. Instead, be incredibly clear about who are the people in your life you most deeply care for and those who need your greatest amount of quality time, service or leadership. These are the priorities in your circle of influence and you should give those people the most focused attention. Learn to say no to anyone not inside your circle, at least at first until you know you won’t overcommit yourself at the cost of your circle and yourself. Don’t let random people or their false emergencies knock you off the path from serving those you’ve already committed to.
2. Stop micromanaging and start empowering:
You don’t have to do everything for others. People don’t need to be micromanaged. When you switch your mindset from needing to take care of everybody and every little thing for them, to empowering others to take care of themselves, you get massive amounts of time back and a renewed sense of control and aliveness in your own life. If you choose to help people, as quickly as possible set them up to win without you. That must be your strategy from the outset.
3. Automate more:
Outsource or automate things that don’t matter, bring you joy, need your unique focus and attention. The tiny things you *think* you have to do can usually be automated or handled by others or modern tools, apps and systems. Once you set up the little things to run automatically, you save time and can return to what matters most.
4. Give people quality time:
What people want from us isn’t all our time; they want the time they have with us to matter. They want their interactions with us to be authentic, energized, heartfelt. When you’re with people, make sure you give them quality time. Giving someone just twenty minutes of full attention and energy is worth four hours of half-hearted attention. Make the time you have with others count.
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Sean Fargo is the Founder of Mindfulness Exercises, a former Buddhist monk of 2 years, a trainer for the mindfulness program born at Google, an Integral Coach from New Ventures West, and an international mindfulness teacher trainer. He can be reached at [email protected]
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