Being a business leader or manager can be both physically and mentally demanding. With many shifting changes in the work environment, even higher-ups are getting stressed and burned out. The impact of poor workplace mental health has affected company productivity across the board, where as much as $6 billion was lost financially. To overcome these challenges, many have turned to different coping strategies. Physical fitness has become a key strategy for leaders to combat the stress of work, and build up energy, endurance, and overall wellness. Exercise not only benefits physical health, but also can also be harnessed into how they lead their businesses. Here are some ways physical fitness can improve leadership:
Encourage goal setting and discipline
Fitness comes from setting goals and following a regulated exercise regimen. It demands a systematic approach to a goal, requiring you to stay disciplined and accountable for yourself. As a business leader, this mindset can translate into organizational work. You can strike a balance between motivating and disciplining your team to strive toward the goals set by your company. In addition, being able to work out gives you a greater understanding that rest is as important as work itself. Being able to rest between exercises can help you push yourself further and be more effective in achieving physical fitness. Similarly, letting your employees rest after a workday is essential to keep a work-life balance and raise productivity. By setting realistic goals and managing the team well, you are sure to have happier employees and a successful business.
Connect better with people
With healthy lifestyles becoming a popular trend nowadays, more people have been working out and getting fit. Sometimes, social support is the perfect motivation for losing weight. People who start a weight-loss program with friends or acquaintances are more likely to complete these programs and maintain weight loss. You can connect with like-minded employees over fitness goals, giving each other health tips, and helping solve problems or setbacks. This can build good communication between one another, helping leaders garner respect in different areas — from their healthy lifestyle to their work ethic. One great way to connect with fellow fitness buffs in the office is to ensure there’s a dedicated space where employees can stay active during their breaks. This doesn’t have to be a full-blown gym, but instead can be an open room with some yoga mats. As shared in our post on making others feel thankful, having a dedicated space can give you the opportunity to engage and mentor fellow employees on exercise routines. This in turn can build greater support and interest in their careers, as they are able to see that their employers care for their physical wellbeing.
Boost your confidence and creativity
When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins that interact with your brain receptors and make you feel good. A study on mental health and creativity found that physical activity not only boosted their mental health but also improved their creative cognition, helping them overcome mental blocks and lack of inspiration. This both lowers your stress and increases your confidence and creativity, which is especially helpful for leaders in the workplace. A leadership position is often a difficult and demanding job that requires you to make tough decisions. On the other hand, exercise is also difficult and forces you to work outside your comfort zone. Both of these areas require you to push yourself beyond your usual limits, working on both your physical and mental stamina. While both tasks are not easy, being able to accomplish them through grit and hard work can provide the confidence you need to tackle more arduous tasks and see better results across all areas of your life.