Give a Little Grace: How to extend grace to yourself before you burn-out
Inspired by this month’s featured episode of the Moms Making Six Figures Podcast where I sat down with Gretchen McCants –the young and powerful CEO of My Brand Lashes and Royal Beauty—to talk about her love of people and serving them, and in doing so learning to extend the same grace to herself that she does to others. In order to enjoy the journey to success and the view once you’ve arrived, Gretchen says the secret is to celebrate the small wins along the way and to become your own best friend.
If your inner critic has become louder than your cheerleader, it’s time for a heart-to-heart with your most challenging employee—you. Extend some hard-earned grace to yourself before you hit a burn-out of no return.
You encourage your team to have them and to hold to them, but how are you doing at sticking to your own? No one is going to benefit when you’re running on empty. Learn when you need to step back, and come back when you’re refreshed.
Be Your Own Best Friend.
When you have a setback, look at the situation (and yourself) as a friend would. Taking on a different perspective –a bit more removed— will allow you to see it for what it is without entangling your own self worth in the process. Better yet? Reach out to others –friends, family and mentors— to help you reframe the situation.
Lead with Empathy.
Stop looking at your empathy and compassion as hindrances. Caring for others (and yourself) creates opportunities for your business to grow and allows you to show up as yourself in your professional life.
Mimi Doe, author at Top Tier Admissions, says it best, “In my 20-plus years in this role, I’ve seen how leading a company with empathy fosters a healthy and collegial workplace where team members are trusted to contribute and take risks.”
Acknowledge your Mistakes—with Understanding.
Acknowledge your mistakes and use them to learn from what happened. While you set achievable goals to right your “wrongs” take care of yourself in the process.
You would never rub salt in the wound of a colleague, so stop doing it to yourself.
Care for Yourself.
Your business does not exist without YOU. Make time for self-care and reflection—scheduling both on the calendar as non-negotiable appointments.
Ginni Saraswati, Founder and CEO of Ginni Media, says it like this, “Remember that you have no business without your body or your whole self. Give yourself at least 5% of the grace you give clients and team members and watch your attitude change.”
Focus on the Big Picture.
When a mistake or failure occurs, take time to acknowledge it and accept it. Affirm yourself by noting prior mistakes or failures that have led you to your current success. When you look at your journey in hindsight, you can see clearly how each moment worked toward the bigger picture of your present. Continue focusing on that bigger picture and work this mistake for good, too.
Be You, Not Perfect.
Deyman Doolittle of ShipSigma encourages business owners to show up as themselves:
Be real; don’t be perfect. Often, leaders feel like they have the weight of the world on their shoulders and one misstep will lead to the world crumbling around them. Stop doing that. Allow yourself to be you in your truest form. Mistakes will happen, so let them and stop aiming for perfection.
Similarly, Gretchen began to find success and build her dream client base when she stopped trying to fill the shoes of the company’s former CEO, and instead focused on making the brand her own. She stopped feeling like an imposter, because she was showing up as herself fully.
If as leaders we prioritize practicing empathy and caring for our employees and customers, we must extend the same kind of care to ourselves in order to avoid burn-out. If we aren’t celebrating our small wins and successes along the way, what are we working so hard for in the first place? Let’s change the face of business leadership for ourselves and the up and comers—allowing humanity to exist in the workplace again.
You can read more about giving yourself grace as a business leader according to the Forbes Expert Panel here.