A 15 Minute Practice that can Jump Start Your Leadership

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15 minutes.

It’s not a lot of time.

But leveraged strategically, 15 minutes invested in self-leadership once or twice a week could begin to jump start your leadership to the next level.

Self-leadership requires a reliable system of:

  • Self-examination,
  • Reflection, and
  • Action

Leaders require the discipline to examine their actions and motivations with ruthless honesty. They require a method to reflect deeply on the implications of that examination, and then they need the fortitude to turn those reflections into concrete, growth-oriented action steps.

Tall order.

How can you do that in your own leadership?

It can begin with 15 minutes.

For close to 20 years I have invested about 15 minutes once or twice a week in strategic self-leadership that has produced significant results.

Here’s what I’ve discovered.

1.   Maintain a weekly personal record of your leadership

Since the mid-90’s I have maintained a leadership journal, in which I regularly examine such questions as:

  • What is the best leadership I made this week? What made it strong?
  • What is the worst leadership decision I made? What made it weak?
  • Where is my leadership struggling?
  • Where is it gaining traction?

2.   Reflect on previous entries

Whenever I update my leadership journal I start by reading what I jotted down one year ago, 5 years ago, 10 years ago, and 15 years ago.

Some call this obsessive, if not downright nerdy. But reflecting on my leadership journey has been a key component of my own growth.

3.   Hold yourself accountable to make changes

It’s no use having a leadership epiphany if you’re not going to translate those “a-ha moments” into action.

I do that by jotting down what actions I am committing to make as a result of my reflections. Knowing that I will be revisiting my leadership journal in a few days time is a powerful motivator to carry through on my commitment.

As I noted in an earlier post, there can be tremendous spiritual benefits to this practice too.

Give it a shot.

It might be the most strategic 15 minutes you invest each week.

How do you self-leadership from an ideal into a practice?

the author

Scott Cochrane

Lifelong learner, practitioner and coach of leadership, across more than 50 countries. Follower of Jesus, husband of Nora, grateful parent and grandparent.

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