Being present is often a struggle for many leaders, especially those who are gaining influence and responsibility. It quickly becomes an issue of balance, time and attention. The danger lurks when we are trying to be present to too many people at the same time… when we begin to spread ourselves wide and not deep (with our relationships).
Effective leaders understand this and they make intentional decisions with their time and attention so that they can Be Present to those who matter most (to them) and those who they feel they can impact in the greatest way.
As Andy Stanley said at the event,
The more successful you are, the less accessible you will become. This isn’t a good or bad thing, it’s just a truth of leadership. We can get tricked into thinking that we will always be present and available to everyone. We won’t be able to.
So how do we do it? How do we stay Present? There are many ways but here are four to start with:
1. First we need to recognize the issue and accept it. Being present is a choice.
2. We must become more comfortable with saying NO. Every time we say YES to something, we are saying NO to something else. Time is a limited resource, you only have so much. Use it intentionally.
3. Decide who / what is important. If it’s your family, make a choice and draw a line in the sand (figuratively) that they will be priority over other things. Turn off the phone when you get home, engage, say NO to things that take you away from their time with you, show them that they matter by how much attention you give them. Whatever it is for you that is important, make it so. Our actions speak louder than our words.
4. When you meet with people, meet with people. Don’t be somewhere else in your head. Be Present. Be a good listener, ask questions, find out about them and what makes them tick. Even if what they have to offer isn’t for you, you can still look for a way to encourage them even if it’s simply by making them feel important (which being present will do).
Being Present isn’t rocket science, it’s just living and leading intentionally. It’s recognizing our own limitations and choosing to invest in those people and things we feel most called too.
As Andy Stanley also said,
Even if you don’t change the world, you can still change somebody else’s world.
Ironically when you change someone else’s world, you DO change the world.
It all starts with this… Be Present.Related posts: