The Power Of Developing A Strong Presence

Strong Presence

How To Develop A Strong Presence

It’s a question that we most likely don’t stop to ask ourselves often enough…

What is the one thing that I can do for myself this week?

While to-do lists and work calendars can feel overwhelming and time consuming, it’s important to keep in mind that one of the greatest, most simple gifts that you can give to yourself on a weekly basis is the ability to build and grow a strong presence. 

In other words, start to give yourself full permission to be present with your thoughts, and your time.

Building a strong presence: Why take the time?

Let me clarify a little bit further. In any typical week, most of our motivation and thoughts lies behind tasks that need to be done, errands that might need to get done, and work meetings that need to be attended.

But rarely do we pause, and take time to be present for ourselves, and only ourselves. To truly reflect, and listen to the powerfulness of simply being present.

This is important not only for yourself, but for your loved ones as well. It can be difficult for those surrounding you to get on board, be supportive, and show up for you if it’s not clear that you’re also showing up for yourself.

If it’s obvious in your life that you’re not taking time for yourself, and taking care of yourself, others can notice that.

Signs you have a strong presence. 

When you carve out time, and take that time to sit be present with yourself, you’ll begin to notice the results. 

In my life, I’ve noticed across that the practice of a strong self-presence has resulted in small rewards such as:

  1. Increased confidence
  2. Encouragement knowing that I get to start my day with me
  3. Clarity around prioritization in my life

A strong presence translates to strong self worth.

The more consistently that you are able to practice presence, the more often you’ll notice this increased confidence, and self worth. 

Investing in yourself is important because, without investing, there is no advancement. And without advancement, we end up becoming complacent. Which as many of us know, complacency is the enemy of progress

Strong Presence: how will you show up?

I’ll leave you with the same question that we started with: what will you do for yourself this week?

Beyond that, how can you work on being present with yourself, and taking that time to reflect and prioritize? 

My hope for you is that as you build your power of presence, that clarity and confidence follows.  Show up for yourself first, and everything else will fall into place. 

Try it out, and comment below to let me know how it goes! Or head to my Instagram account and comment there. I would love to hear from you!

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How To Switch Off From Work Stress (3 Tips!)

Switching Off From Work Stress

3 Tips To Switch Off From Work Stress

Recently, my husband and I traveled to Naples, Florida. It was a last minute trip, and to be honest, I had no idea how much I needed it until we were there. It was wonderful to relax and unplug, and truly take some time to step away from work. 

Which leads me to today’s topic: how to switch off from work stress

Switching off from work stress is no joke. And too often, we don’t realize how wrapped up we are until we are finally asked to step away. Believe me, it wasn’t an easy endeavor for my husband (and accountability partner) to convince me. 

Switching Off From Work Stress: Just Say Yes

It actually took my husband three times to finally get me to agree to our trip. The excuses were plenty and easy to come by:

  1. Work is too busy…
  2. But what about the kids?
  3. My team can’t handle me leaving right now.

The list goes on. So instead, let’s look at a different type of list; how to turn off mentally and unplug from work.  

Why Switch Off Mentally?

You’ve most likely heard this before, but I will say it again because it’s true. It’s crucial for your personal life, and self-care to find a way to destress, and detach yourself from work. With that in mind, here are 3 pointers to help you switch off.

Switch Off Work Stress Tip #1: Change Your Environment. 

This doesn’t necessarily need to be to the scale of packing up and hopping on a plane. You can work on turning off mentally without going on a trip (although it is nice to get away), even if it means exploring on a local level. Something as simple as closing your laptop, and taking a walk to a nearby park can be a great reset.

Get out of the same space that you’ve been in daily for the past few months. Change your setting, get out into nature, and get some fresh air. Force yourself out of the rut that you may not even know that you’re in. Get off that treadmill of routine, and work emails that you’ve been chasing for a little bit too long. 

Pro tip: Consider taking a journal with you, and writing down some reflections. Open up your notepad on your phone; what’s been weighing on you, how are you feeling? Just the act of writing it out can help you feel better.

Switch Off Work Stress Tip #2: Find An Accountability Partner. 

When it comes to taking care of your mental health and turning off that stress from long work days, accountability partners truly are crucial.

In my life, my accountability partner also happens to be my husband. But it can be a friend, or another family member. Someone who will be willing to confront you when they start to see you frazzled, or running too hard, and simply say, “Have you recently taken time to step back, and enjoy the fruits of your labor?”

“Do you think you might need a day or a half day to yourself, to unwind and tune out?” 

The answer is almost always yes.

By the way… accountability is a huge part of creating tangible results across your life, both professionally and personally. To learn more, sign-up here to get my free Personal Brand Action template sent straight to your inbox:

Switch Off From Work Stress Tip #3: Unplug

This might be the hardest part when it comes to switching off work stress, yet it’s also the most important. If you don’t unplug, your brain isn’t being allowed to turn off those work thoughts. 

If that means turning off your phone for a while, or putting it on airplane mode, then so be it. In 2020 we are consumed more than ever with email notifications and text messages, and the badges and alerts seem never ending. 

Step away from the notifications for a few hours. Put up an out-of-office if you need to. Do what you can to create the space to allow your mind to recharge, and re-energize. 

Why Switch Off From Work? 

Believe it or not, practicing the above tips will actually help you come back to your work feeling refreshed, resilient, and ready to rock. You may find you have more energy and vigor to confidently lead your team

Taking time away from work can open up opportunities for you to get a better bird’s eye view, and create or reinvent as needed. You just might find yourself coming up with a solution to an issue that’s been lingering for awhile. 

So tell me, what will you do this week to help you power down from work stress, and start to refresh and recharge? Comment below, I’m here to help!

Keys To Time Management: The Power To Choose

Keys to time management

Keys To Time Management: The Power To Choose

I think we can all agree that this year has presented significant challenges.

Yet something that hasn’t been discussed quite as frequently are the conflicting challenges that come from being home-bound more often than normal.  Whether it’s work, family, homeschooling, errands… the list goes on. The responsibilities are endless, and often overlapping. So, how do you prioritize them all?

Keys To Time Management: How To Prioritize

Believe me, I get it. More often than not my to-do list can feel overwhelming, and I’m just not sure where to start. And when I find myself in that position, I pause to remind myself of the power of choice. 

Repeat after me: We have the freedom to choose. 

You are in full control of how you choose to react and respond to tasks, situations, and events that are thrown your way. And that is a powerful reminder to yourself of when it comes to your time management techniques. 

How To Manage Time Wisely

It’s easier said than done for me to just tell you, ‘Choose your time wisely.’

Yet when you mindfully step back and look at what really matters across your life, time management through the power of choice starts to become more clear. 

Time Management is ultimately assessing what matters. 

Specific categories to look at are:

  • Who matters the most?
  • How can we bring loved ones into our daily tasks and priorities?
  • What do we need to do differently?
  • How can we stay true to who we really are?

And the last big one… what do we need to say no to?

Keys to time management: evaluate your time

I want you to take a few minutes to honestly ask yourself the above questions. Write them down, if that helps. From there, you can start to make better choices around time management, through the prioritization across your life.

Assess what matters. Ditch what doesn’t, or change what you can do differently. From there, you will begin to take back control and power that you have with the freedom to choose. 

I’m going to leave you with a quote from a powerful book called Essentialism

“Our highest priority is to protect our ability to prioritize.”

– Greg McKeown

Protect your freedom to choose, and prioritize. You’ll thank yourself in the long run.

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Race In The Workplace: Healing The Divide

Race in the workplace

Race In The Workplace

These are truly unprecedented times. 

It’s a phrase that we’ve heard often throughout 2020, and will continue to hear. So today, I want to focus specifically on the topic of race in the workplace, and how we can grow and learn as leaders from current and recent events.  

The death of George Floyd has reminded us all that there is still very much a deep wound of racism in this country, that’s an undeniable fact. As we all step back and take a hard look at what’s going on, it becomes clear that there’s a large chasm to overcome, both in and outside of the workplace. 

I may not have all of the answers, but I do have some thoughts on how to be both constructive and honest when it comes to having racial conversations in our places of work. 

Race in the workplace: How to have the hard conversations

If you’re reading this as an African American leader in your workplace, you may have already had white coworkers reach out to you offering condolences and apologies, yet unsure what to say past that. And while all conversations may look slightly different, I would challenge you to follow-up statements such as…

“While I appreciate the sentiment and the current outreach, there are many times across the organization, as an African American person, that I feel left out, or that I don’t have a voice.”

And if you’re not sure if that’s true or not, considering asking yourself, “Am I able to be my authentic self in this organization?”

How To Increase Diversity In The Workplace

Why am I encouraging you to ask the hard questions surrounding race?

Although we may have seen many press releases, and statements across social media from various companies, announcing their plans and the current work they do with the Black Community, we need to see and do more.

What people of color really want you to do is to have the conversation. Have the boldness as a leader to ask the question, “Has there ever been a time within this organization that you felt disconnected, or excluded? If so, tell me about it.

If we start having these conversations on a daily or weekly basis, then the pop-up conversations that we are seeing right now will start to feel much less disingenuous.

Race & Leadership In The Workplace

My challenge for leaders is to start doing the hard work.

My challenge specifically for multicultural and African American leaders is to have those conversations that you may be holding back on.

Let coworkers and leadership know where you think the company can do better, and make potential changes. While it may feel uncomfortable at first, it’s necessary. And once you start to do it, you may just find that this authenticity begins to translate across the entire workplace.

Have the hard conversations.

This might require that you stop, pause, and examine your own thinking. Challenge what you think you know about others, and what you think you already know about race and racism. Think about certain beliefs or notions you may have been holding on to; why are you holding on to them, and should they be reframed?

As I mention in another video, the power of acknowledgement is a great starting point.

Race In The Workplace: How To Move Forward

Last but most importantly, now is the time to go back and apologize. If you find yourself thinking back to a conversation that you just didn’t handle well… or maybe avoided all together, now is the time to address it.

“I apologize… did I offend you when I _______?”

This is how we should be leading in 2020. This is how we can come together, not just as coworkers but as a healthy, diverse workplace. Because in the midst of such division, and unrest, now is a more important time to strive for unity than ever before.

If you’re looking for even more resources on how we can create opportunities in the workplace during these challenging times, I would encourage you to check out a recent speaking engagement I participated in with WBENC entitled Brand Me: Creating Opportunities In Unprecedented Times.

We can get through this, and we can make positive changes. It just has to start now.