How we show up at work, and with our families is a direct result of the choices we make. We make choices every day that either helps us be at our best or bring out the worse in us. A cornerstone of greater resilience is knowing what helps you be at your best, and making intentional choices every day to make that happen.
The rigours of life are taking a toll, with one in five of us reporting to have taken time off work due to mental health issues over the past 12 months. We’re an exhausted bunch. And this is despite being aware of some fundamental truths about well-being.
We all know that sleep and regular exercise are vital for physical and mental well being. For most of us, that means getting 6-8 hours of sleep, though some seem to thrive on only 3-5 hours a night. There’s also been a lot written on how successful people tend to be early birds, rising well before the crack of dawn, to get a head start on the day.
Richard Branson is up by 5 am, PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi by 4 am and Apple’s Tim Cook starts his day at 3.45 am. So should we all adopt this approach if we want to be successful? By all means, go for it if you think that works for you. But don’t do it just to emulate the habits of successful people.
When are you at your best?
It’s a simple question. If the answers don’t immediately come to mind, then you’re probably not doing what’s needed for you to be your personal best.
The answers are different for each of us. The key is knowing what works for YOU.
Personally, I know that I’m at my best when I log 7 hours of sleep on average through the week. I also feel a lot better about myself when I exercise more regularly, and when I feel better about myself, I’m more resilient. Beyond the basics of sleep and exercise, I know I’m at my best when I’m not rushed so I’m careful to not overbook my schedule. I function best when I have sufficient time in between meetings to gather my thoughts and recharge. I also know that as much as I love spending time with family and friends, I need some time out for myself during the week for my mental well-being. These are the intentional choices I make to help me be at my best. This is what I do to shore up my daily resilience.
You know when you’re at your best. You can feel it. You’re more energised, more positive in your outlook and mentally more solution-focused as opposed to problem-focused. When you’re at your best, you’re firing on all pistons and better able to perform at your full potential.
You probably already know what you need to be the best version of yourself. But knowing what’s needed is not enough. Where most of us fall down is the discipline of making intentional choices to do what’s best for us.
With two months left to the year, if you’re drained and can’t wait for the year-end break, it’s time for a serious re-think and intervention before it starts all over again next year … and yup, that’s only 60 days away!
So, do you know when you are at your best?