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A Heavy Burden Part 2: Dealing with the stress of leadership


Chronicles of Experience


Let’s get right into our part two on stress and handling it well as a leader at work.  Some of the tips below can help you as a leader deal with the stress of having your followers rely on you.  Some of them may also be useful to followers keen on rising to the position of leader in the future.  Take a deep breath.  Take a breath and let’s begin.


Take Control:

To alleviate stress you need to illuminate stressors.  One of the most frustrating and stressful things in life is not being in control of your own space and world.  So the simple solution to this is to take control.  Get organised.  Take control of your space and do things your way.  Perhaps make daily lists of what needs to get done and take it one step at a time.  It is easier to get motivated to finish small tasks than to take on a whole year’s worth of work from the start.  Get it sorted.  Get it started.


Relinquish Control:

An important aspect of leadership is knowing what you can and should control.  Micro-managing your staff is not a good use of your time.  It also places their responsibilities on your shoulders.  They will soon start to feel frustrated.  If you cannot trust the people under you, you should have no one working under you.  Let it go.  Let them do their jobs.


You’re sick.  You feel stuffy and sweaty.  Your head is pounding into your skull, but you can’t go home.  They couldn’t possibly do any of this without you.  Except the business can function without you.  Trust your followers.  Give clear instructions and then rest.  Once you are back on your feet you can fix anything that isn’t quite perfect.  Soldiering on at 50% means you won’t be at 100% for a very long time.  Take some time.  Take a nap.


The final word for this piece is this: NO!  Learn when to say it and when not to.  Trust the people working with you and know when you need to take a break.  A captain on the bench is a wise man.  Have that wisdom.  Have less stress.

1 Comment

  1. Cobus van Graan says:

    In my case I regularly have to check myself if I am still a leader or became a do-er again. I was good at delegating untill I started my own business.
    The responsibilities of keeping my company afloat made me forget to be a leader. In order for me to be a leader again I had to get my head right first…be a leader and not a do-er! Then I had to employ the right people and give each the right responsibilities in line with their strengths. To be a leader you also have to check yourself if you are still a leader or became a do-er again. Thanks for a great article.

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