#017 - 5 Rituals To Double Your Resilience As a Leader

And Show Up At Your Best Every Day

Reading time: 3,39 min

Welcome to number 017 of Refresh. Rethink. Your crunchy leadership value nugget. 😇

Habits, habits, habits, habits. If you're like me, you feel slightly annoyed when someone tells you to cultivate habits if you want to be successful.

Tell me something new... 🙄

That's why I like to call habits: Rituals.

A ritual feels more profound. A pattern of small actions, one after the other, in the same order. Rituals make us better. Rituals make us more resilient in everyday life.

☝️ Resilience is an underrated leadership trait. With the fast pace of business anno 2023, we must cultivate resilience to bounce back quickly from setbacks and avoid burnout.

Let me share today with you 5 of my beautifully imperfect rituals that will make you more resilient as a leader.

1) Prime your mind with a fixed morning ritual

🛌 As soon as you jump out of your warm sheets, make your bed as beautiful as possible, almost like a military drill. You have completed your first task of the day and prevented yourself from jumping back into a snooze again.

💧 After drinking 500ml of Himalaya salted water, do a 10 min meditation to focus on your feelings, identify your inner state, and set the intention for the mental state you want after your reflection.

📕 Then, write a few sentences in a journal. Writing on paper is a great way to teach your mind to articulate thoughts in a structured way (in my head, it is usually massive chaos).

🚿 Then, take a cold shower. Start with 10 seconds after your warm shower and work up to 300 seconds. I've been doing this for the past 8 years, and it is truly one of the best things I've ever discovered.

This is my personal morning ritual. I manage to do this for 5 out of 7 days usually. The mental clarity and inner motivation after this ritual are just insane to me.

The Ritual:
Build your own! What works for you best that is replicable every morning?

2) Turn off ALL Notifications and Manage Phone Pickups.

This one sounds trivial and common knowledge by now. Still, every single notification takes your mind away from mental clarity and being in the big picture.

🟢 Every pickup fuels a negative cycle of dopamine release. Notifications make you pick up your phone more often. On days when I've got 100+ pickups, procrastination and stress levels are much higher. On those days, I care less about my food intake, am more snappy with others, and am mentally tired.

🟢 Managing your energy is vital to being resilient. Notifications are energy drainers; manage them carefully. I've only got the banking app notifications or those that help me stay healthy and fit.

The ritual:

Analyze your screen time and pickups every week and understand where your daily pickups went. Then try to eliminate the urge for that pickup by blocking the app or turning off a notification.

😬 Example of a bad pickup week for me:

Yes, my phone is called “Maverick” 🙄🤣

3) Letting Go Of Feelings Ritual

This is the toughest, and I have not mastered it 100%. But on days when I do, it makes all the difference.

Feelings fundamentally drive everything we do. For example, fear of failure, rejection, anger, shame for making a mistake, and guilt of not completing a task.

  • We all have them…

  • We speak them out, making them grow…

  • We push them away, increasing the pressure…

  • We escape from them by drinking or overworking or else…

☝️ But that is not resilience.

All of this causes the feelings to damage our inner state, drain our energy and burn us out.

Instead, try to identify the feeling. Is it anger? Is it shame? Is it fear? Is it guilt?

When you've found it, allow it to be there, surrender to it.

Then try to replace the negative feeling with a positive one.

The Ritual :

I set 3 times per day reminder to yourself ( yes, with a notification😆) to experience feelings. It is like a mini meditation to experience your feelings and let go of those who are not supporting you. Try it out!

4) Backward Planning Ritual

Trusting yourself in fully owning your time is an immense energy and focus booster.

I've cultivated a ritual for myself called the backward planning ritual.

Owning your time makes you more resilient, by definition.

My Linkedin Posts and newsletters on this topic are among the most sought-after topics I have written about.

Have a look here:

The ritual:
Every day adjust your calendar blocks backwards to reflect the time your really spent on the topics and meetings you were at. This gives you immense clarity in where your time went and how to plan for the next week.

5) Ask For Help Ritual

We tend to ask only for help when we're stuck on something. But that is usually where we're already at the point of having burned excessive energy trying to overcome our obstacles.

I've made it a ritual to ask for help for at least 1 thing every day BEFORE I even start working on it, or at least when I'm not stuck yet.

Asking for help allows for access to the universal knowledge database. “We. Don’t know what we don’t know” turns into knowing. Knowing helps us save energy and increases the likelihood of success in what we do.

Others hold the keys to our own success

Others are very driven to help. Use this to your benefit and reach out for help before you get stuck.

The ritual:

Make a recurring task for yourself to ask for help on anything you're working on, regardless of being stuck. Try also asking for help from random people, and don't look at that person's position, expertise, or level of success.

Resilience is about being able to bounce back from hardships. It is about being able to fall seven times and stand up eight times.

But we need energy for that. No energy, no resilience.
These rituals will make you more resilient, guaranteed!

Am I 100% good at this? No way, it is not about perfection.
Will there be bad days? For sure
Be Ok with that.

Let me know what rituals you'd add to this list!

See you next week


Next to consulting teams, I coach CEOs.

When you’re ready to learn how I’ve helped other CEOs / Founders develop themselves as visionary and resilient leaders, then book a free consultation with me here:
Book a 1:1 call with Leon

Excited to get to know you!