How good leaders tune into the world around them!
We’re all feeling a little on edge now. The climate crisis, political crisis, energy crisis, economic crisis, geopolitical crisis, etc. Who can blame you?
Briefly scroll through the latest news on your news app and you’d be forgiven for thinking the world is about to end. The news these days focuses heavily on extreme events. It’s well documented that humans are more likely to feel the need to read negative articles as oppose to positive ones. So, it’s no surprise that your worry increases, and you believe the world is getting worse. We humans are also prone to thinking that things that come readily to mind are more representative than they are. This is known as availability bias.
What can you do about it?
Yes, keeping up with some news is essential, especially for managers and leaders. But what effect is that having on your mental health and the mental health of your colleagues, staff, friends, and family? It’s human nature to want to know what’s going on in the world right now but sometimes you must go against your instincts. Whether you’re leading a team at work or in charge of family at home you can take ownership and control the scale and impact of that negative media flow.
Turn it off. Not forever but when you realise it’s affecting you or even when you notice it is starting to affect someone around you. Take a break from the news.
1) Leaders Switch off news notifications or redirect them to a junk folder.
There are a few news apps out there that are notorious for sending breaking news notifications throughout the day. Switch these notifications off and choose a specific time each day (or once a week, up to you!) to open the news and get updated. Encourage others to do the same.
2) Leaders Turn off the Radio/Tv or change the channel.
If you’re in the habit of having the radio going in the background at work or in the car turn it off or switch to something different for a while. You may notice a change in mood quite quickly. Do this when you’re at home too, if you have the TV on, switch it off or change the channel.
3) Leaders ask others to respect each other’s attempts at managing their mental health.
Like the previous points, assess the best time and place to keep up with the news. If the radio is on in the office, suggest switching it to something a bit more light-hearted for the afternoon. A leader with empathy pays close attention to the people around him or her – what makes them tick, what inspires them and how they feel. They are an ally.
4) Leaders are always learning
Improve your leadership as often as you can by reinforcing your learning and topping up your team’s training when it’s due. Crescente’s courses are filled with indispensable information like that found in today’s article.
Workplaces with a mentally healthy workplace culture are more productive, and there is strong evidence that good mental health and good leadership go hand in hand.
Have a look at Crescente’s latest offering for team training here.