Safety instructions given on a plane include putting on your oxygen mask first before you help anyone else. It’s an analogy I always use when it comes to mentoring people who push themselves too hard. We are notorious for running ourselves into the ground, either by taking on too much at work, and in our personal lives, or by over committing to a result that is often simply impossible. Because we are human with – let’s face it – limited resources. Even if the motivational self-help books tell us otherwise.
At this time of year as the season changes, our bodies jar at the onset of cold, and accumulated fatigue. All the more reason to take deep, careful breaths of our own using our metaphorical oxygen masks. If our bloodstream is filled with oxygen (achieved through deep, controlled breathing), it actually sharpens our brain function, and reduces stress. (Known fact).
Also we may have small or vast numbers of people reliant on 0ur ability to inspire and guide them to deliver significant projects. If we are short of breath or burnt out, we are no good to them.
It’s hard to get off the carousel when it’s going at full speed, however we have to find a way to slow it down, if we are to take care of ourselves long term and the people who rely on us. Get this right – put on your oxygen mask first when you’re running on empty – and you have a way better chance of lasting longer, being more inspiring, achieving projects of substance, and showing others how it’s done.
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© Amanda Yensa Manor 2016