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In an over-scheduled day of breakfasts, lunches, meetings and phone calls, how can you stay present?

For leaders, staying in the moment is not a choice, it’s a necessity. Important decisions and topics require focus and attention. You owe it to your people to be fully present and make the best use of the time you have with them.

When you’re not present, it’s obvious and discouraging. People can lose motivation.

Being mindfully present requires planning and discipline. Rasmus Hougaard and Jacqueline Carter, co-authors of “The Mind of a Leader” have these tips for building your mindfulness muscles:

Plan for presence. Set regular touchpoints and one-on-ones with your people. Walk the shop floor, halls, or breakroom and be genuinely interested in people. Show support by showing up.

Do less to be more. Sometimes someone just wants to be heard on an issue or a problem. Don’t rush to solve, just give them the space to open up and process. Not only does the problem often fix itself, but it creates more connection and engagement.

Get grounded in your body. Take a few minutes with breathing and eyes closed to connect your mind and body with your present environment. It calms, recharges and heightens awareness. It also promotes a more balanced, uplifted and open posture.

When we’re properly present, it can make all the difference in how we think, behave and communicate. We process more productively. We exhibit qualities like focus, inclusion and empathy.

If you want to be a better leader, be present.

Have a great week.

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