On a Sunday morning, I have developed a habit to take a few moments to write and read about leadership. Taking this time to reflect on the week that has passed and also plan for the week ahead is so important for my growth from a personal aspect and as a leader. Reading about new topics, ideas and perspectives can be incredibly stimulating and inspiring.
While the household sleeps (all late risers) and I have taken care of my two exuberant hounds, fed them breakfast and they finally settle beside me, I enjoy taking some peaceful moments with a cup of coffee in hand. Many times I will start by reading something inspirational or educational, immersing myself in knowledge that can help inform my views on leadership. Other times, I will review notes from my week take out my laptop and start writing instead.
This time is a quiet oasis in my otherwise busy schedule of work projects, our female leaders network family commitments and running errands. The smell of coffee wafting through the air while peaceful silence and a hound or two at my feet provides just enough comfort to make writing enjoyable yet inspiring enough to keep me motivated. It is here that many of my leadership learning has been consolidated –brief flashes of inspiration related to new ways of working with teams, more effective communication styles or creative strategies for problem solving emerge from these momentary pauses away from all other distractions.
Writing on Sundays helps me further develop my skillset as a leader – not only do I gain insight from reading new material, but also doing written exercises helps hone my critical thinking abilities. Crafting well-thought-out arguments on important topics helps me understand and refine how others perceive me as a leader – it encourages greater clarity when articulating ideas both verbally and in writing; it fosters fresh perspectives which might otherwise remain hidden; it stimulates creativity which can make all the difference when discussing complex topics with colleagues or team members; lastly, regular writing keeps me constantly learning which is invaluable in any profession but especially helpful within leadership roles where continual growth is essential for success.
So why develop a writing or reflection?
Reflecting on the past week can be crucial for understanding successes and failures, as well as recognising patterns that may be contributing to a current situation. Writing in this way allows us to revisit events with greater clarity, allowing us to identify opportunities and areas where improvement may be necessary. Additionally, it stimulates creative problem-solving ideas by examining situations from different perspectives and angles.
Finally, taking a few moments out of each Sunday with a cup of coffee to just write can be incredibly beneficial for recharging throughout the workweek. Even if this activity doesn’t directly further your progress in some tangible way (like tackling one of those planned tasks), it still serves an essential role in keeping your brain fresh so you can tackle challenges with the energy you need later on. This time should not only be dedicated to pondering over matters related to leadership but also venting personal frustrations or exploring other creative outlets such as writing stories. This ensures that your mind remains healthy during times of stress while providing much needed mental stimulation away from work-related activities.
How do you take time to reflect on your week or learn new leadership skills? I’d love to hear from you.
Author: Ciara Moore
Ciara is the founder of Female Leaders At 50