Written by Courtney Lynch

I packed on some pounds during the pandemic experience.

In spring 2020, I was doing fine – eating well, exercising often, and sleeping great. Then, as what originally seemed like a short-term crisis (remember thinking this would all resolve itself in 6-8 weeks?) turned into a much longer haul, the stress of it all got to my waistline. By the fall, I noticed that even my forgiving “soft pants” were filling out. I then worked up the courage to step on the scale and clarity came quickly.

After taking a pause to process the shock and despair, I began the difficult work of shedding the extra baggage. I joined a gym, bought an exercise bike, and took a hard look at the bad habits I’d picked up during quarantine. How interesting that many of them involved poor food choices (or, too many food choices!) and chill time on the couch. I’m still working at it, but now that I’m once again moving more, and eating better, things are going in the right direction. I know it will take months to get back on track and I’m up for the journey.

In matters of wellness and fitness, instant change doesn’t mean instant results. However, with our leadership development, we can accelerate our progress quite quickly.

I have the privilege of coaching amazing professionals. Once they make the mental commitment to grow, shift, and develop, I support them in seeing how they can implement change immediately and hear about the results they experience.

Here are some examples:

  • The senior leader of an operations team understands that he’s not as valuable as a doer, his value comes from clearing the way for others. His new standard for success is responsiveness. He’s streamlining his schedule so that when team members reach out for guidance, he’s available to connect.
  • An HR leader admires his CEO, especially how she takes the time to personally thank team members at all levels of the company for their specific contributions. In an instant, he realizes that he can adopt this very same behavior and begins doing so that day, via text messages to colleagues he appreciates.
  • A talented nonprofit leader volunteers to support a partner organization on a challenging matter. They value her guidance so much they ask if she’d consider consulting for them. In a matter of days, she’s begun a side hustle as a consultant, finding a creative outlet that energizes her in new ways.

Think of how you’d like to level up. Perhaps you want to stop being late, or resist the urge to gossip, or begin a gratitude practice. How can you begin expressing a better level of performance right away? Do that today. And tomorrow. Enjoy the instant reward of rapid growth as a leader. Not only is it possible, it fuels you for important, longer-term journeys.