Stress Management & Leadership
Written by listed counsellor/psychotherapist: Marie-Louise Rolfe Bsc (Hons) Dip C, MBACP BPS
29th November, 2009
Daniel Goleman, authority on emotional intelligence in organizations, calls this the leadership paradox: “For leaders, the first task in management has nothing to do with leading others; step one poses the challenge of knowing and managing oneself.”
In essence, stress has a major impact on effectiveness of leaders. The two are intrinsically linked. By impairing leader performance, we could be forgoing much of the effects which “good leadership” can bring.
Leadership requires the exercise of influence or power. It involves responsibility for the organization, and it requires the sacrifice of personal needs for those of the company. Leaders are under continual scrutiny and evaluation. All these things increase the pressure and may lead to stress. There are several ways to relax leaders and your people when they feel stress or burden and this needs to be done in a professional manner.
Reach your potential Ltd is a unique company whose consultants have over 30 years of experience in Naval Leadership and Psychotherapeutic Stress Management. They use this experience to develop the best leaders by firstly looking at their work style behaviour and emotional intelligence. In doing so they find out immediately what kind of leader they are, how they manage their emotions at work and how aware they are of this. This is followed by a weekend away where people who are presently leaders or who would like to become better leaders, are shown how to deal with stress at work, taking away techniques and experiences that they can use everyday.
Reach your potential Ltd are continually discovering people who say or do the right things but deep down they either do not believe in the strength of their leadership or do not know how to deal with the stresses that are very real in their everyday working lives. In turn, this has a negative impact on how they are leading and adds to the stressful situation they may already be in.
The purpose of a Team building & Leadership weekend away is for a group of people from the same company or a group of individuals who are aspiring leaders to experience what it is like to take control and how they lead others in a stress free environment, allowing the mind to be more creative in the way they do this..
Through learning how to prevent stress and by taking back your control, RYP consultants show you how to Lead successfully without allowing stress to take it’s control of you. Clients take away techniques to action themselves through experiencing how they are behaving in a group or one to one situation.
An example of a weekend includes: A weekend is usually divided up into a day of scrambling water falls or hill walking with various tasks given on the way. After a day of light exercise and beautiful scenery this has given the group time to unwind and to be receptive. Day two is more about opening up communication channels. This is experienced through methods such as Art therapy, Voice Coaching, visualisation techniques, Psychometrics and group facilitation.
How the individuals involve themselves is integral to the workings of the group and the outcome. Experiencing the reactions of others give the opportunity for Leaders to see patterns that perhaps are stopping them from moving forward or causing stress at work.
Of course, each of these activities involves the whole body and both nervous systems. The key is always in one’s attitude. It is possible to let ambition and competitive nature interfere with the relaxation and recovery processes at any time. Again, the key is in being aware and mindful of how we manage our thoughts, our bodies and our spirits. The idea that leadership stress can be managed by employing mindfulness, hope and compassion for renewal are not only logical, but validated by scientific research.
Socrates taught us to ‘Know thyself’
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