Leading through disruption – Part VII

Arthur Marara Point Blank

Focus on the positives

While it is essential to acknowledge the challenges of disruptive times, it is also important to focus on the positive aspects.

Celebrate small wins and successes to keep team morale high. During disruptive times, it can be challenging to stay positive, but it is not impossible.

As a business leader, focusing on the positives is indeed important and can have several benefits.

In this instalment we are going to discuss the reasons why you need to focus on the positives and then how you can focus on the positives.

Most conversations often forget the “how” part.

Why should you focus on the positives?

What you focus on grows, and what you neglect dies.

Even nature teaches us the principle and power of focus.

Have you ever heard of solar cookers, or you may actually be in the business of selling them?

As the name suggests these are cookers that use an amazing and free source of energy, the sun. This is achieved by concentrating sunlight through a mirrored surface with high specular reflectivity to concentrate light from the sun on to a small cooking area (this area is called the “focus”).

Depending on the geometry of the surface, sunlight can be concentrated by several orders of magnitude producing temperatures high enough to melt salt and smelt metal.

For most household solar cooking applications, such high temperatures are not really required. Solar cooking products, thus, are typically designed to achieve temperatures of 65 degrees Celsius (baking temperatures) to 400 degrees Celsius (grilling/searing temperatures) on a sunny day. (Wikipedia). Interesting is it?

Imagine if you can focus on business development, quality service, customer care, personal development, execution excellence.

Alan Pariser rightfully writes on the power of focus, “The sun’s energy warms the world. But when you focus it through a magnifying glass it can start a fire. Focus is so powerful!” Indeed, it is very powerful.

Here are a few more reasons why you should focus:

Motivating and inspiring others

By showcasing a positive attitude, you can motivate and inspire your team members to perform at their best. Positivity is contagious, and when employees see their leaders maintaining an optimistic outlook, they are more likely to feel motivated and enthusiastic about their work.

Enhancing employee engagement

Employees who feel valued and appreciated tend to be more engaged in their work. Recognising and highlighting positive achievements, milestones, and contributions within your organisation fosters a sense of pride and satisfaction among employees, leading to higher levels of engagement.

Cultivating a healthy work environment

Positive leadership contributes to a healthy work environment where open communication, collaboration, and innovation thrive. When leaders focus on the positives, it fosters a culture of trust, transparency, and support, which encourages employees to voice their ideas, take calculated risks, and contribute to the overall success of the organisation.

Overcoming challenges

Focusing on the positives does not mean ignoring challenges or problems; rather, it means approaching them with a solution-oriented mindset. By emphasising the strengths and resources available, leaders can help their teams overcome obstacles, find creative solutions, and maintain resilience during difficult times.

Building relationships and trust

Positive leaders build strong relationships based on trust and respect. When leaders consistently recognise and appreciate the efforts of their team members, it strengthens the bond between leaders and employees. This, in turn, promotes loyalty, boosts morale, and improves employee retention rates.

Focusing on the positives does not imply ignoring or dismissing genuine concerns or issues. Effective leaders strike a balance by acknowledging challenges while maintaining an overall positive outlook and guiding their teams towards solutions.

How to focus on the positives

There are some 8 strategies to help you focus on the positives:

Acknowledge your emotions

It is important to recognise and understand your feelings during disruptive times. Give yourself permission to feel whatever comes up, whether it is frustration, sadness or fear. By acknowledging your emotions, you can begin to process them and find ways to move forward.

 Practice gratitude

Take time each day to identify and appreciate the things you are grateful for. It could be as simple as a supportive friend, a beautiful sunset, or a good book. Cultivating gratitude helps shift your focus from negativity to positivity.

Limit media consumption

While staying informed is crucial, consuming excessive negative news can fuel anxiety and make it harder to stay positive. Set boundaries on how much time you spend consuming news media and consider focusing on more uplifting content instead.

Surround yourself with positivity

Spend time with people who uplift and support you.

Engage in activities that bring you joy, such as hobbies, exercise, or creative pursuits. Seek out inspiring stories or motivational resources that can inspire and encourage you during difficult times.

Practice self-care:

Taking care of your physical and mental well-being is key to maintaining a positive mind-set. Get enough sleep, eat nutritious meals, exercise regularly, and engage in activities that help you relax and recharge. When you prioritise self-care, you will have more resilience to face challenges with a positive outlook.

Set small goals

Break down your larger goals into smaller, achievable tasks. Celebrate each milestone you reach along the way. This approach keeps you motivated and focused on the progress you are making, even if the overall situation is challenging.

Find meaning and purpose

Look for opportunities to contribute or make a difference, no matter how small. Helping others, volunteering, or engaging in acts of kindness can bring a sense of purpose and fulfilment, which can boost your positivity.

 Practice mindfulness:

Mindfulness techniques, such as meditation or deep breathing exercises, can help you stay present and reduce stress. By cultivating mindfulness, you can increase your awareness of positive moments and learn to let go of negative thoughts.

Staying positive during disruptive times is a process that takes effort and self-compassion. Be patient with yourself and give yourself permission to experience both positive and negative emotions.

Arthur Marara is a corporate law attorney, keynote speaker, corporate and personal branding speaker commanding the stage with his delightful humour, raw energy, and wealth of life experiences. He is a financial wellness expert and is passionate about addressing the issues of wellness, strategy and personal and professional development. Arthur is the author of “Toys for Adults” a thought provoking book on entrepreneurship, and “No one is Coming” a book that seeks to equip leaders to take charge.

Feedback: [email protected] or website www.arthurmarara.com or contact him on WhatsApp: +263780055152 or call +263772467255.

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