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The Key to Winning Your Summer (#202)

TCL Illustration 202

The Confident Leader


When the kids were little, we cherished summertime. The pace changed and there was less structure to the day. Inevitably, two weeks into summer, at least one kid would say, “I’m bored.” Initially frustrated, we learned to embrace this comment and found the perfect response. 

“Is life not a thousand times too short for us to bore ourselves?”

―  Friedrich Nietzsche

This Week’s Edition

Taking time to be “bored” this summer could be the secret to generating creativity and renewal for you and your team. 

Clarify Your Thinking

The dreaded “I’m bored” threw us into camp director mode filling the day with a program full of activities. Quickly, we learned that was not sustainable. 

We changed our approach. Our new response to the “I’m bored” comment was:

“Great. I’m glad you got there so quickly. What are you going to do now?”

You should have seen the look on the faces of our children. The intent behind our response was that it is good to be bored because amazing things happen when you have free time with no distractions. 

In our house during those summers of boredom, creativity flowed freely:

  • Forts were built
  • Puppet shows were created
  • A detective agency was started
  • Backyard games were invented

How does this apply to leaders for this summer?

The slack time of summer affords freedom to do things we typically do not have time to do. Things slow down a bit. It seems as if we can breathe. Traffic isn’t as bad. Restaurants aren’t as full. People are on vacation. Things are a tad slower than normal. 

So, as leaders, if time is what you need, then this is the time to take the time you need. 

Old Thinking: I never have enough time; let alone extra time to rest, relax, and be creative. I guess I’ll just keep going at a breakneck pace and continue to complain that I don’t have enough time.

New Thinking: Summer is a good time to rest, relax, recreate, and reflect. I should probably be intentional about what I need and make a plan to fill that need. 

Thoughts Lead to Actions

Confident Leaders choose to be intentional. They:

  1. Know what they need to be their best.
  2. Make the time to fulfill those needs,
  3. Actually fulfill those needs!

If you, the leader, are not modeling that for your team, they will not learn how to do it themselves. 55% of U.S. workers don’t take all their allocated time off each year. This may perpetuate the cycle of burnout, disengagement, exhaustion, and lack of creativity and innovation. 

Summer is a great time to invest in what you need as a leader to take the field again in September to finish the year strong.  Now is the time. Here are some ideas: 

  1. Calendar your time off and plan a vacation
  2. Listen to your podcast queue
  3. Read a book focused on your area of development
  4. Attend a leadership workshop
  5. Get out of the office to gain some perspective
  6. Go in late or leave early

Your pace from February to May may have created muscle memory that’s hard to break. Don’t let the inertia of the past four months sweep you past an opportunity to downshift this summer. 

No matter how you choose to spend your summertime… do so intentionally!

Here’s to a little time to breathe, focus on your leadership development, or just take a nap!

Boost Your Performance

Watch this week’s video for a few more ideas on how to create and spend the slower time offered by summer.

What’s Your Opinion?

How will you invest in what YOU need as a leader this summer? Share it with me at

If you are going to be a leader, you might as well be a good one. Don’t let doubt count you out. Have a confident week!

Robin Pou, Chief Advisor and Strategist

We live to make bad leadership extinct so forward this newsletter to others who strive to be confident leaders. 


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What is “The Confident Leader”?

During the Covid-19 Pandemic, I began a video series called “Panic or Plan?” It was designed to equip leaders to navigate the doubt they experienced and to rise in the confidence they needed to lead during turbulent times. It took off. I then started this newsletter to equip leaders in the same fashion each week for the doubt that crashes across the bow of their leaderSHIP.