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Episode 43: Unnecessary Isolation In Leadership

overwhelm podcast Oct 18, 2022

You’ve probably heard, “It’s lonely at the top” and as a leader, you’ve probably felt it even if you’re not at what might be considered the “top”. Leadership can be very lonely and isolating. And, it’s not often easy to find the advice and support you’re looking for. 

A few years back I did an informal survey of 35 leaders in ministry about their biggest challenges. I expected "overwhelm" to be #1 because that’s another one I hear a lot and it was a close runner up, but the actual top challenge was feeling isolated and alone in leadership! 

If we are isolated and overwhelmed – that’s a tough combination. It’s no wonder leaders are tired. With so many leaders in the same situation – it ought to be easier to bring leaders together to support each other. 

In fact, Jay Y. Kim, author of Analog Church and Analog Christian AND our guest on Lead Your Leaders in episode 35, talks about the value of being surrounded by community as a necessary foundation to be a non-anxious presence in an anxious world. One of the gifts we can give the world as leaders is our presence. And if we are holding on to that isolation and overwhelm we are going to engage the world with an anxious presence even if we don’t realize it. 

So, what do you gotta do to get started? First, prioritize it – make time in the busy of life to look for your community. Second, take the leap to check out new relationships or communities of leaders even if the first “connections” don’t work out.  

Get started with a few of these resources:

  • Lead Bold a connecting ministry for women in leadership with online and in person opportunities to join with peers in ministry.
  • Lead Bold conference, November 3rd and 4th in Chicago IL for women leaders to be inspired and learn together. I’ll be there teaching a breakout session!
  • Amplify Mission Network, Leadership Academy for learning cohorts for middle managers in nonprofit organizations and Executive Directors.
  • Check out networking groups and learning opportunities for other leaders in a similar ministry role. 

In the past, I would dismiss opportunities like these because I believed my to-do list was more important or I was more responsible for the relationships I needed to steward than finding relationships that would support my leadership.

Now I have and the mentors that speak into my life save me time with advice better than what I would have thought of on my own. They inspire, challenge and encourage me when I get a little flat and start questioning if I can do the thing I’m doing. They remind me of truth when my confidence falters. There is such richness that comes from good community that you really can’t quantify it. 

Links to Check Out:

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