5 Leadership Lessons from your morning run

Morning runs are a great way to learn valuable Leadership lessons. Now the thought of getting up early to some may seem a bit difficult, rather unnecessary, or even laughable. However, as with all things difficult, it presents a fantastic opportunity to self-learn and develops.

I would like to highlight 5 powerful Leadership lessons picked up from my pre-dawn runs. Lessons that significantly contribute towards building a world-class positive behavior and uplift both our personal and professional world.

1. Do Not Settle for An Easy Way Out:

How many of us set up the alarm for 5 am or 5:30 am but end up hitting the snooze button? Thoughts hit you ‘Let me skip today, will start from tomorrow’ or ‘Do I really need to run while rest of the world is sleeping’ - we succumb to the easy way out and ‘sleep’ again. The act of getting up immediately at the first sound of the alarm bell is a sign of a disciplined or determined mindset. Effective Leadership truly acknowledges the advantage of the disciple. Leaders know that only after fighting the difficult battle do you taste greater success and glory – there are no shortcuts, and nothing is achieved by settling for the easy path.

2. Momentum – Leaders Best Friend:

One of the key contributions a Leader makes to his team is to take that first step, lead from the front, get the ball rolling and build the momentum which carries the entire team through difficult and crisis moments. Momentum at times is the single most important factor towards overshooting what one sets out to do Vs falling short of it. Your morning run builds momentum characteristics. As you run, one truly understands that the differentiator between a good Vs a great run is all about the momentum. 

3. Complacency – Leaders Biggest Foe:

As you do your morning run, one feels he or she is putting in rock-solid hard work. Getting up early and sweating it out is not easy. However, even at 5 am you have someone working harder than you. Tea shop owners, Newspaper delivery boys, Vegetable vendors, Coconut sellers are all sweating it much before you to earn their daily bread. The point is straightforward - true Leaders acknowledge and appreciate that someone is always working harder, putting in more hours, preparing that touch more and if you ever get slightly complacent you stand to be replaced. As complacency comes knocking, shrug it off and continuously sharpen your ax.

4. Accomplishment a Key Behavioural Habit:

As humans, we thrive on our sense of accomplishment. All the hard work and sweat without accomplishing your target/goal is worth nothing. Only when we consistently accomplish our goals do we feel really elevated and motivated in general. When we accomplish challenges, we inculcate a ‘winner’ attitude and we rise above to reproduce and multiply the success. Morning run provides that platform, every successfully completed run is a step towards feeling confident, strong and being prepared to take any future challenge head-on. We develop a Go-Getter – Never Give Up Attitude!

5. We All Run Our Own Race:

Barack Obama retired from the post of the most powerful man on Planet Earth at 55 years…. Donald Trump assumed the same office at the age of 70 years. While running a marathon, as you pace your progress, you understand that it is not about trying to break a world record at 5 am in the morning. You appreciate others who finish before you, celebrate your moment of crossing the finish line and cheer for those who finish after you - Leaderships isn’t always about getting a trophy or being number one. Leadership means you enjoy and cherish your own race and learn to smile on a well-deserving team member stand on the victory podium instead of you.

Collecting the Thoughts Together:

Core Leadership lessons mostly come from challenging and uncomfortable situations. No matter how dominant a task, give pre-dawn running a try. Eventually, it would teach you to be persistence, lift your spirit and thoughts, work with grit and imbibe strong Leadership traits that will serve as a constant reminder to help you to play your ‘A’ game always.

Ready – Set – Go!


Author- Kenneth Wheeler, VP Human Resources, Loginext 

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