As a leader, understand that you must be able to help yourself before you can help anyone else. It is precisely because of that responsibility for others’ wellbeing that every leader should practice self-care.

Answering to Yourself

Of all the hurdles to self-care, your apprehensiveness of the concept itself is usually the first and perhaps also the hardest to overcome. If you struggle to even entertain the idea, consider the difference between constant action and actual progress.

While the former may give an outwardly positive impression, it is not a synonym for the latter. There are many occasions every day that can be your conduit to effective self-care without impinging on your daily professional progress. Here are three questions to ask yourself if you find it difficult to begin.

  • Could you cut back on using social media (or similar habit) for 15 minutes every day?
  • Does your team win more when you make decisions when relaxed or when stressed?
  • Will your other life priorities suffer or flourish if you are healthier?

Answers to these questions show leaders why they can and should practice self-care, and the ease with which they can incorporate it into their daily routine.

Self-Care is the Answer

Self-care for a leader may look different because the stresses and responsibilities they juggle are usually significantly greater. Have you considered these techniques and practices?

Self-Care = Self-Aware

Take moments before and during every task to place yourself in the Here and Now. Open your mind to the world about you and hear what it is telling you. This simple practice puts things in perspective while showing you others’ perspectives; it is one of the most effective techniques to anticipate problems and create meaningful solutions.


Your self-care does not have to be like anyone else’s. A 15-minute brisk run on the treadmill may clear your mind more effectively than an hourlong meditation session, and one or the other can seem like torture to different people. Your version of self-care does not have to answer to anyone but you.


The efficacy of a rejuvenation session is only partially associated with its duration. Timetabling one may work but perhaps more effective – and more necessary – are the ad hoc self-care episodes that you allow yourself as and when you need them. A 5-minute mental getaway can be as invigorating (and more practical) than a 15-minute nap.

Self-care begins to work as soon you start to apply it in your life. When it does, share the experience with your team. Encourage them to find what works for themselves. Need help? Reach out today.