How do you build habits when leading your company? For CEOs, directors, managers, or anyone else in a leadership position, building habits can be difficult.
After all, habits are formed over time; it doesn’t happen overnight. Habits take months or sometimes years before they become second-nature.
As a leader, some of the best habits to focus on are keystone leadership habits, which can have a domino effect on other positive changes. Keystone habits are defined as a small change you can make, which has a wider ripple effect on other areas of your life.
Here are five ways to build better habits as a leader:
1. Set achievable goals for yourself
Whether your goal is big or small, like performing 10 push-ups a day or giving out more than five compliments in a week, setting goals will help you to be more productive and therefore form habits.
Goals should not be unattainable: if they’re too lofty, you’ll never stick to them and will fall back into old habits.
Once you’ve set goals, measure your progress. That way, you can continue to make tweaks along the way.
2. Keep an eye on your emotions
Leaders who don’t keep track of their emotions, while effective in the moment, may find that they struggle with forming habits because of their inability to control themselves.
If you feel like quitting when something’s hard (like writing a big project), it might be time to take a break and get some coffee.
By recharging yourself emotionally, there is no chance of falling back into bad habits.
3. Act the way you want to feel
Plenty of people talk about breaking bad habits, but that’s a negative mindset straight away.
If leaders concentrate on avoiding habits rather than forming habits, they may give up when they don’t get results straight away.
By concentrating on what habits you want and why you want them, then there is a much higher chance of sticking to habits and building habits.
4. Build habits with support
While this may sound like it’s stating the obvious, many leaders go at their own speed and do not ask for help.
This leads to breakdowns in motivation and can therefore make it hard for teams or leadership figures to follow through on promises to themselves (like ‘I’m going to lose weight by cycling instead of driving’).
By asking others for help, it’s more likely that leaders will stay accountable and achieve their goals.
5. Be kind to yourself
The habits that leaders want to take on are usually habits that they can help their performance or overall quality of life.
The fact that habits are hard is the reason why many people already fall into habits that are not good for them. It’s much harder to change habits but it can be done, and by being supportive of yourself, you’ll find it easier to stick with habits in the long run.
For example, taking care of your mind and body is an indispensable habit that will help you thrive as a leader.
How to build habits as a leader: a conclusion
Leaders are typically incredibly busy people, which makes it very difficult to step back and consciously build positive habits.
However, one thing that habits do is to make you feel like you’re not really making a choice.
If you feel like you can make positive changes without relying on huge amounts of willpower, then the battle is already half won.
For instance, if you could build habits around meeting other people or working out, for example having a set time each day or week where you meet up with another person (like another entrepreneur), then that will help you become more productive and generally happier as well
Remember – as a leader it’s essential that you follow plenty of good habits to lead a team, and look after your mental and physical health at the same time. The more of these positive habits you can do on autopilot, the more you’ll be able to build new ones into your schedule. Good luck!