Put Your Own Mask On First

If you’ve travelled through the clouds, you’ll no doubt be familiar with the safety instructions in the event of oxygen masks making an appearance mid-flight.

It’s an important metaphor for those who tend to run around taking care of everything and focusing on everyone else other than themselves.

As a leader, and certainly in all walks of life, if we don’t take time to focus on ourselves, we can experience underperformance, stress, fatigue — both physical and mental — health problems, anxiety, frustration… the list goes on.

How do you see yourself? How do you manage your status? When you think about it, not putting your own mask on first, can affect your performance and, in turn, can be detrimental to your team or organisation. So how can we prevent this from happening? Here are a few tips:

Down time

Disconnect from your phone, tablet, laptop — whatever technology absorbs your energy. Allow yourself some quiet time for reflection and to recharge your batteries.


Who do you turn to for guidance? Do you have a mentor or coach? Regardless of seniority or experience, everyone can benefit from trusted counsel or a listening ear; reaching out for support takes a huge amount of humility — one of the core ingredients of successful leadership.

Personal development

Whether it’s attending training courses or seminars, gaining skills or renewing qualifications, continuing with your own learning and development is vital in raising standards, implementing the latest innovations in your field and providing a fresh way of thinking.

It’s not rocket science. How can we really expect to inspire others, set a good example and create an environment of support if we haven’t addressed this for ourselves?

When the Co-founder of successful social media agency, ‘Likeable Media’, Carrie Kepen, decided to step up to the role of CEO, she realised there were many things she needed to work on in order for her to be ready, however read more here about what was top of her priority list.

By taking care of yourself, you’ll be better equipped to help others and successfully lead your team. What are you going to do today to support your needs?

Tania Watson is the founder of Creative Coaching and an executive coach, organisational consultant and leadership specialist. Creative Coaching is a successful company dedicated to the development of senior leaders in organisations through one to one coaching, intact team development and group facilitation. If you or someone from your organisation would like to have a no obligation conversation about how Creative Coaching may be able to help, please email Tania directly at tania@twcreativecoaching.com.




Executive Coach | Organisational Development Consultant | Leadership Specialist | Champion of People and Their Potential. Follow me for #leadership tips.

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Tania Watson

Tania Watson

Executive Coach | Organisational Development Consultant | Leadership Specialist | Champion of People and Their Potential. Follow me for #leadership tips.

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