Is it too early to ask that question? Maybe even a bit annoying? Yeah, I think so too. But I have to tell you, this is often what leading feels like. As I write this, official summer doesn’t even start for another week (not that the heat hasn’t been pouring on in the last week). Even though your plans for the summer should be well underway, leadership is so much about looking ahead.
It’s like owning a retail store. The season hasn’t even started and swimsuits are on clearance, fall fashions are on the racks and it’s as if summer is a thing of the past. As the leader, you are typically looking two or three or even more “seasons” ahead, trying to anticipate your market. Will it act as the experts are predicting or will it be contrarian? What are your plans? What are your contingencies? What are the contingencies for the contingencies? It never stops and you feel like you’ll never catch up.
And that’s the challenge. It feels like you never catch up. The truth is, you never do. But maybe you’re not supposed to.
Maybe, what you’re supposed to do is “plan for the future but live in the present”. Oh crap, I sound like a motivational poster. Ah well, what can I say. (BTW, that quote is attributed to Audrey Farrell on Goodreads.com).
Anyway, leaders often plan for the future, but they forget to live in the present. Living in the present means noticing those things that are working well right now. Appreciating the plans and processes that are successfully unfolding. Some leaders are so focused on the next thing, the next hurdle they have to overcome, that they forget to enjoy the current success.
As with most things, there is a balance to be struck. The other end of this pendulum swing is being so focused on the immediate present that you are always flying by the seat of your pants. And some of us leaders swing back and forth, back and forth.
I encourage you to find that balance.
If you need help with that, give me a call.