Today, I decided to add an extra kilometer to my daily jog/walk. On my last kilometer, my id started negotiating with my ego. I started asking myself if an extra kilometer would really make much of a difference. I also threatened myself by saying this could cause me some over-exertion injuries. I’m just glad that my id lost to my superego, so I won, I ran/walked an extra kilometer and a half.
I could have lost that internal conversation had I not recognized that this conversation is happening and that I’m taking a side – that of my superego. Whenever we face a challenge in our life, those conversations happen, and it is not always clear which is id and which is superego. We often go back and forth, weighing our options and decide which we want more, instant gratification or the bigger yet delayed rewards.
I’m sharing this with you because I think that as our leadership responsibilities go bigger, we need to equip ourselves to meet those increasing challenges. We can’t do that if we don’t know where we last drew our lines of limitation and decide when and how to cross them. This reminds me of the safety orientation given by the flight crews before a plane goes up. The flight staff would advise that you put your mask on first before helping another. I think this is a metaphor for leadership. Before you help others, you must make sure that you are in a position or condition to help them. You know what they say, you can’t give what you don’t have.
I’ve been dismissive of my health these past many years and as a result, I gained a lot of weight. I used to love exercising. Now, I can’t even remember when I started hating it. I started exercising again a few months back after joining the “biggest loser” challenge at work. It was a hard start, but I finally found the love for exercising the I lost a long time ago. Now, my goal for 2018 is to be healthy. I realized I can’t help a lot of people, specially my family if my health limits me. In that journey, I know that I have to tussle with my id some good countless times. I have to be aware when those negotiations happen, so I know where I’m putting my bet on – my superego.
So here’s a call to action; what extra mile are you taking for yourself? Which lines of limitations are you crossing? What are you going to do to draw you closer to your higher future self? It would be hard to take an extra mile for others if you don't go the extra mile for yourself first. Decide what to do and be aware of the pulls. Are your fears pulling you back or are your aspirations pulling you forward? You have to decide which way you want to be pulled. Your growth depends on it.
You know, people are not always comfortable talking about these stuff because they think it's too touchy-feely. However, we need to recognize that managing ourselves is everyone's (yes, you and I!) biggest challenge! Join me on January 16-17 so we can tackle these things that impact on our emotion and decision-making and see how we can achieve self-mastery. Click below for more details and to register.