Every year, millions of people decide to make some sort of behavioral change, most often focused around something in the physical dimension (weight loss, exercise, etc.).
They buy new workout clothes, hire trainers and join clubs — literally hitting the ground running when Jan. 1 arrives. Parking lots of fitness centers throughout the world are packed and there are lines for the treadmill and elliptical. But alas, the regular gym attendees know they only need be patient because by Feb. 1, the parking lots empty, there are a plethora of treadmills and ellipticals available for use and normalcy returns to the club.
The holistic you
Every person is a complex, biological being, having physical, emotional, mental and spiritual dimensions.
■ The physical is understood, consisting of exercise, nutrition and sleep, but change seldom happens in human behavior when only considering a diet or a new way to tone one’s abs. It’s the other dimensions of energy that truly impact behavior change and how our behaviors impact others.
■ The emotional dimension is defined by the quality of our energy. In this dimension, people can oscillate between feelings of challenge and threat to feeling energized or fatigued. One can quickly see that leadership in business should be able to create an environment of high-quality emotions. As a snapshot, some leaders can be authoritarian in nature and run their organizations through fear. If an employee feels threatened, they will not be able to access all of their talent and skill on demand. They will often find themselves in survival mode, trying to protect their job instead of freely performing at the highest level possible.
■ The mental dimension is the focus of our energy. Mentally, we live in a scattered world where multitasking is the norm. Being present and laser-focused is difficult in a business culture where we are overscheduled, overcommitted and constantly bombarded with the chimes, dings and vibrations of the various alerts we receive.
■ The spiritual dimension — the most important dimension — is the force of our energy. Human beings are mission-specific. We always have a purpose and it is very difficult to stop us. In business, with distractions and demands, we often find ourselves skimming across the surface of life, unable to delve deeper into reflection or introspection.
I often ask executives, no matter how productive they were last year, if they were asked to do more this year? The answer is always a unanimous “yes.” It appears that year after year we will only be asked to do more and we will never be asked to do less.
So, how will you increase your capacity to meet the never-ending demands in your life? More time is not an option. The answer is to assess your levels of energy in all four dimensions, deciding how you need to live your life to develop more energy, which will allow you to access your talent and skill on demand.
As you develop your New Year’s resolution, think about all four dimensions of energy and how you’re putting them to use in your daily life.
Both your professional and personal life will benefit. ●