You’re a leader. Don’t believe me? Then ask yourself this:
- Do you have kids?
- Do you have officemates?
- Do have friends?
Have you ever tried to positively influence their lives or enroll them in an activity?
Well, then you’ve acted on being a leader. Which also means you know how hard it can be. You may have a great conversation with someone about making a change in their lifestyle, and then the next time you see them they’ve lost momentum and gone off the rails.
If you’re a leader of a Whole Life Challenge team, that means you’ve enrolled people from your life into getting healthy and you may be worried about keeping them in the game. You promised them results, but that means they need to be engaged. How can you ensure that?
We’re here to help you with those hours when you are not physically present with your “team” – be it your friends, family, coworkers, or WLC team. These five tools will empower you to inspire and engage your community, and they are tools you can use beyond the Challenge, as well.
1. Points Are About Participation, Not Perfection
There are points to be earned during the Challenge. It’s what makes it fun, helps with accountability and gives people something to compare their results to. Just like you measure your miles run each week, the pounds on your barbell, or the time of your CrossFit workout.
However, points have their dark side. Focusing on “points” alone can make people do anything to earn them. In the context of the Challenge, this shows up as people skipping meals when they have nothing WLC compliant in the house, exercising at 11:45pm just to earn their points, chugging water right before bed, or stretching while driving to work (yes, that is a safety issue – don’t even think about it!).
Points for points sake isn’t the point (how’s that for a good point!). What I mean by that is trying to win just for winning’s sake, whether it’s in the Challenge, at work, or with your family. As a leader, a more successful strategy would be to participate all-out, do your best, and make choices that allow you to live your life fully. Show by example that you’re okay losing points when it allows you to fully participate in the meaningful events in your life. Show your team that winning isn’t the most important thing, and that you’re not going to do ten minutes of push ups at 11:50pm just to get a perfect score.
It’s fine if you’re willing to go the extra mile once in awhile to make that habit a part of your life, but if your behavior is too out of the ordinary, then it won’t be sustainable. And let’s face it, push ups at midnight is not sustainable!
2. Be Human
Perfection is the enemy of progress. No one is perfect. Not me either. And it does a disservice to the members of your team when you only show your best side. Not only do you want to show your teammates it’s okay to lose points, literal or otherwise, but you want to be real in your communications about it.
Find ways to share with your clients or coworkers what your personal experience is really like. What are your highs and lows? Where do you struggle? What is missing in your preparation? Where are you not succeeding? How could you improve your progress? These are things that will humanize you, and help people engage and participate with you. These are all great thoughts to put in your reflections during the Challenge.
3. Inspire People
You are the leader of your team. You obviously have something going on that inspires others. What is it? Are you a master of preparing WLC compliant meals for your kids (like Najla Kayyem at SicFit Scottsdale)? Do you have a regular workout routine at home that your gym members and players would like to know about? Do you have great motivational quotations to share each day?
Find your thing – whatever it is – and invite your community to follow you wherever you post your inspiring stuff (Facebook, Instagram, etc.), or create a new post every day in your team’s WLC communication feed.
4. Check Up on Your People
There are people in your life that you want something better for – they may be your coworkers or family, they may be members of your gym , or they may be friends you’ve invited to do the Challenge with you. Regardless, you probably don’t see these people 24 hours a day. To help them enact change, it’s best to keep track of their progress and reach out to them regularly.
Take a moment each day while you log your Challenge points to read the reflections of at least five people. That’s what I do each day. It almost always turns into more than five people (because it really doesn’t take that much time), and it’s a meaningful activity that has an impact on each person you “like” or comment.
If you’re not currently in the Challenge, try this on Facebook or Instagram. But take the time to leave a comment somewhere. Could be a simple “I hear you.” Might also be a suggestion for improvement or a tip for dealing with a challenge. Whatever the case, your community definitely wants to hear from you and will appreciate it.
5. Share Your “Secrets”
We all have ways we’ve created in our lives to be successful at the things that are already habits. What are your “secrets” in the kitchen? Your tricks with your stretching, workouts, or drinking water? They might not sound like much to you (like filling a pitcher of drinking water and keeping it upstairs in your bathroom), but for someone else, it might be just the idea or breakthrough they needed.
The best place to do this is inside of your reflections, in the WLC communication feed. There you can leave a “status update” any time, along with a picture. And if that isn’t working for you, share your tips on Instagram or Facebook. I’m sure there are people on your team who will find them there.
The Power of the 5 Tools
You’re a leader in your community. That’s a fact. And you’ve maybe been frustrated that you can’t help people more. These five tools will help spread your influence, drive engagement in a healthier lifestyle, and quite possibly stoke a fire in a friend, family member, or coworker.
They don’t take much time – but they could change a life.