Have you ever felt overwhelmed leading a team towards a shared mission while trying to juggle the demands of your personal life? This story is about how a simple family visit provided perspective on the balancing acts sometimes needed when leading teams.

A Quick Story

In mid-April, I drove ten hours to celebrate a very special occasion—my father’s 90th birthday. For my week-long visit, I stayed in a quaint one-bedroom cabin in the countryside of southern Indiana, owned by my sister and listed on Airbnb. This simple getaway offered me the perfect blend of family time and solitude. It also allowed me to reflect on the delicate art of balancing the various aspects of my life.

Balancing Family-Care, Self-Care, and Business-Care

During my stay, I spent cherished moments with my family. I helped my dad celebrate his 90th trip around the sun. We navigated modern technology’s mysteries. I enjoyed reconnecting with my sisters and their families. These precious moments allowed me to practice balancing the delicate line between my work and personal life. 

While I devoted time to my family, I also had opportunities to carve out moments for myself. I read a novel, roasted marshmallows by the fire pit, and played guitar with my nephew. The sunrises over the fields were spectacular and helped me soak in the tranquility of my surroundings. I sometimes forget how much I need this kind of time to rejuvenate my spirit and sharpen my focus.

Along with these personal activities, I dedicated time daily to writing business content. This wasn’t just any writing; it was a deliberate effort to develop resources that help nonprofit leaders cultivate more effective and resilient teams. Writing daily during this “vacation” week not only helped build my professional asset library but also reinforced the necessity of integrating work with personal life.

Lessons for Nonprofit Leaders

These experiences from my trip parallel the challenges faced by many nonprofit leaders today. Just as I found balance among family, self-care, and business activities, leaders must navigate the complexities of team dynamics, resource management, and personal well-being for themselves and their team members.

Here are three lessons:

  • Take Breaks: Just as my retreat allowed me to balance helping family and working with renewed energy, regular breaks can help your team maintain focus and creativity.
  • Integrate Activities: Balancing various activities doesn’t mean compromising on productivity; it means aligning them to enhance overall effectiveness and satisfaction.
  • Support Each Other: Teams must recognize and support each other’s personal and professional needs, fostering an environment of mutual respect and understanding. Leaders can easily model this behavior.

Get More Resources for Your Team

If these insights resonate with you (and you want to receive copies of the resources and ideas I wrote about during my country cabin retreat), I invite you to subscribe to my newsletter. Each issue includes tips, resources, case studies, and real-life stories. They are designed to help you and your team achieve more profound impacts, work more effectively together, and improve your mission delivery.  SUBSCRIBE here to receive tips and resources delivered directly to your inbox. I send them twice a month and will never spam you. (Plus, you can always easily unsubscribe if they aren’t a fit for your needs.)

Need a Break? Visit Dee’s Country Cabin

Consider Dee’s Country Cabin near Salem, Indiana, if you’re seeking a serene writing retreat or a quiet space to recharge. This cozy, historic, hand-hued log cabin in the country is the perfect spot for anyone looking to escape the hustle. It’s simple, peaceful, and just what you need to find your balance. Check it out on  Airbnb.

Finding Our Equilibrium: A Recommendation for Leaders and Teams

My trip was not just a celebration or a typical family visit but a crucial reminder of the power of balance. Finding equilibrium between various demands is not only beneficial—it’s essential—both in personal life and while managing a nonprofit. As leaders, modeling this balance is vital; it helps us and our teams navigate the complexities of work and life with grace and effectiveness. Let’s continue to find our unique ways of balancing, just as we help our teams do the same. For more on how self-care integrates with effective leadership, check out one of my previous blogs, Self-Care Comes in Many Forms.”

What strategies do you use with your teams to help them balance their personal and nonprofit professional life?

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