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How stress and tiredness are impacting Australian leaders

Good decisions are seldom made when people are tired, stressed or not in the right frame of mind. Despite this, many people making key decisions on a daily basis are tired, stressed and dealing with emotional issues.

According to Jodie Brenton, managing director of Australia’s largest psychology and counselling franchise brand, Life Resolutions, leaders and managers need to keep well in order to be effective and to make good decisions. “Unfortunately, this can be easier said than done.”

“Owning and running a business and being a manager in today’s environment can be challenging and stressful,” Jodie said.

“It seems as though everyone is working longer hours, taking on more responsibility, dealing with more issues, and having to manage more challenges. All of this takes its toll on everyone, particularly the people responsible for leading and managing through these challenges, and yet it is these people who need to stay mentally healthy and well to deal with all of the stress and pressures associated in order to provide guidance and help support everyone else.

“This is why I strongly recommend to managers to take care of yourself. Don’t take your health for granted.

“Taking good care of your mental health and overall wellbeing means you will sleep better, think more clearly, feel more confident and less stressed, help to keep your blood pressure at lower levels, have more energy and feel better overall. All of this means you will be more effective as a leader and a manager.”

Jodie has put some top tips together to help leaders and managers take good care of their mental health and wellbeing.

  • Turn your phone off at the dining/dinner table. This rule should never be broken.
  • Take time out and spend time with friends, family and others. Be present mentally and ensure you fully immerse yourself and don’t think or talk about work
  • Reduce your intake of alcohol. Alcohol affects your sleep, blood pressure and other elements of your health. Avoid any type of inappropriate drug use.
  • Talk openly with those you trust and do it often. This helps to process, share and reduce the weight of problems.
  • Exercise regularly. Make sure you find time to do this no matter what. If you don’t have time to go the gym, go for fast-paced walks at least four times per week
  • Get enough sleep. Avoid doing things before you go to bed that may affect your sleep patterns. Sleep is very important for our body because it gives our body time to restore itself.
  • Plan your time well and set realistic targets. Scheduling is important in keeping things organised and reducing last minute and unnecessary stress.
  • Get a hobby, take up an activity that is not work-related and enables you to switch off completely.

“Finally, and most importantly, ask a friend or loved one to help keep you accountable to these things. Sometimes a gentle reminder from a caring friend or loved one can assist to keep you on track with your mental health and wellness. Your health depends on it, and so does your job. And I should add, so do all the people relying on you in your business or organisation, as well as clients and other stakeholders. Leadership affects a lot of people.”

Established in 2001 by respected industry duo Mary Magalotti and Jodie Brenton, Life Resolutions is a national brand of psychologists and allied mental health practitioners with a strong commitment to providing Australians of all ages and backgrounds with the highest standards in counselling and professional care. Jodie Brenton is the group's national managing director.

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