Strength from the Trail

STRENGTH: a word I often hear, but it hit differently this last week while I was at my early morning
running class. I was listening to a guided run by Coach Bennett (lead coach for Nike Running), and he
looked up the word strength in the dictionary and talked about it during the run. He said it wasn't just
physical strength but our emotional and intellectual strength that we had to work to build up. I was now
running on the trail, alone, smiling big… smiling and thinking about the teachings that I do with my
buddy Rex Pemberton on leadership FLOW. What made this so ironic was here I was, doing physical
activity, listening to a physical coach, and he was talking about all the other things I needed to have
squared away to make my physical performance even better.

When we talk about the four areas of energy to leaders and teams (intellectual, physical, purposeful,
and emotional), people usually find that they are either strongest in physical or most focused on
overcoming weaknesses in physical. Scientifically, it is fair to consider physical when we think of energy.
On average, science tells us that our bodies go through the equivalent of one 110-watt lightbulb of
energy per day. I don't know about you, but we prefer the most efficient light bulbs in my house!
If you've ever heard one of my keynotes, webinars, or workshops, you know that I repeatedly say that
your energy is your currency. I repeatedly say that you "have to be ready so you don't have to get
ready". That is not just a flippant remark – it takes real work to be ready. It takes work to give your best
energy daily to our teams, clients, partners, families, and communities.

Are you purposeful and focused on how you are building up, using, and sharing your energy daily?

To indeed operate on all cylinders, we have to have space in our mind, spirit, and body for the
intellectual things that we're doing, the physical energy that our day requires for stamina, purposeful
energy to ensure we know our why, and emotional energy to ensure we are filling our buckets not to be

I have found that this is more than something I can say on a Monday and I hope it lasts through Friday. I
have to be focused on my energy every single day. The reason I mentioned focus is that I must intend to
build up that energy. For example, when I go for a run, it often helps clear my head and I feel better
afterward. However, I need to focus on that energy to take it to the next level. When I run with my two
best running partners, we chat about life and my emotional energy is also filled. I am purposefully filling
my intellectual bucket if I go for a long walk and listen to an audiobook or podcast. I often pair up my
energy-boosting time because I tend to have jam-packed days. Science tells us that just five minutes
daily in these areas can significantly enhance our energy.

Energy requires multiple input sources. If it's left on its own, energy will eventually die out. That is why
leadership flow becomes crucial for leaders and teams to embrace as part of multiplying their currency
and ensuring we are ready, so we don't have to get ready. Being ready will allow us to bring our best
selves daily, manage our stress, and adapt to changes in the most productive fashion.
Feel free to use the comments section to share your tips on maintaining energy throughout the day!

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About the Author

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Jennifer Stanford is a sought-after Trust Coach and the CEO of Emergent Performance Solutions, as well as an author and speaker. Her entrepreneurial spirit, combined with years of practical experience gives her specialized insight into business and psychology.

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