Founder Therapy: 3 High-Achiever Habits to Empower Leadership and Performance

We are what we repeatedly do.
Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.
— Aristotle

Being a Founder is extremely rewarding. Bringing your ideas to life, making a positive impact in the world, and empowering those around you to thrive, are only some of the wonders of leading as a High Achieving Empathic Giver. On the entrepreneurial path, every day is a new exciting adventure.

Performing at this level also means dealing with multiple challenges on a daily basis. We have experienced it first-hand during our 20 years of helping 1000+ Founders, CEOs, and investors thrive as High Achievers. Life as a Founder can often feel like driving a Formula One car while playing simultaneous chess with eight different opponents, whose only job is to focus on a single game.

Committing to a lifestyle with such a high level of intensity, where each decision you make has a significant impact, means that your wellbeing and alignment are some of your most precious assets.

Join us in the second piece of our article series to discover the game-changing habits that will help you protect and cultivate your body and your mind, creating a positive ripple effect on your journey as a Founder.

Maximizing Your Mental Energy and Willpower

Our first habit in this article is more than a habit: it’s a skillset.

Think of life as a Founder like a marathon, where your willpower is a muscle. As a Founder, you are likely presented with situations and decisions that require a great amount of mental energy, focus, and courage to sort out on an everyday basis. This mental energy or endurance can be exercised and developed, making your willpower stronger over time. But, if you’re running a marathon every day, you can’t afford to spend your precious energy on chasing the bus. This is what’s called willpower leakage.

Willpower leakages have a tendency to sneak up on us: we might get so used to them, that we don’t even notice them when they interrupt our flow and redirect our energy to matters of lesser value. Some examples of willpower leakages are:

  • A source of toxicity inside your team.
  • Negativity or pressure coming from the board.
  • A habit you have developed that isn’t aligned with what deeply matters to you and takes value away from your journey.

Because willpower leakages appear and develop in a rather stealthy fashion, even the highest-performing individuals can struggle with them. Adopting a maximizer mindset is a great way of mastering this issue.

Doing regular checks for willpower leakages is important to assure your energy is being dedicated to the things that matter. If you notice them, one way of approaching them is by starting small and fixing the leakages one or two at a time.

When you’re first starting out, we recommend having willpower checks on a weekly or monthly basis. Then, you can move on to quarterly checks, where you assess the core areas of your life, and intentionally reflect on how you can maximize your resources. Over time, you will notice how much smoother the road is when you dedicate your energy and attention to the initiatives that carry the highest value and impact.

Leveling Up Your Leadership Through Gratitude and Appreciation

There are many aspects of leading a highly engaged company where people who believe in what you believe in are showing up every day, feeling deeply connected to the purpose of the firm. To show how much you see and value your people, developing a practice of gratitude and appreciation towards others can be very empowering.

It all starts with your values: gratitude is connected to the things that matter to you, to the path you have chosen, to the impactful opportunities, and to appreciating the people you’re meeting along the way and who are contributing to your journey.

Gratitude and appreciation can be incorporated into your daily routine as concrete habits, and they can even become second nature to you. You can start by adding a quick “thank you” to your interactions, or a short appreciation note in your emails to team members. These small actions will soon become ingrained in your ways of behaving and connecting to others, to the point where you won’t need to think about them anymore because they will be a part of who you are. This is a great way of leveling up your leadership.

An important part of showing appreciation towards others is doing it in the appreciation language that they resonate with the most. For some, a verbal compliment or a handwritten note will make their day. Others feel more connected to service acts, like being helped out with a project. There are five different appreciation languages, read our previous article to explore them all.

Gratitude and appreciation are directly connected to living as a Positive Giver. Developing this habit can be a way of recognizing that it takes a village to win extraordinary achievements. By building this into your nature as a leader, you are inviting your village to be a part of your path, to participate in something bigger than themselves, and contribute back to their journeys as well.

Leading by Example to Elevate Your Culture

An essential part of building a brilliant company culture has to do with leadership philosophies. In direct connection to your cultural foundation, your leadership showcases the values you believe in, and it drives the behaviors of your team members.

When it comes to leading your people, living out your values means showcasing the behaviors you want to promote in your daily interactions, both internal and external. The best way of encouraging your people to develop the behaviors of High Achieving Empathic Givers is through leading by example. This helps them experience how a brilliant culture feels, and gain a sense of the environment they can level up to.

The key to leading by example is to act with intention in supporting your people to thrive. An important part of this is championing them in their pursuit of mastery, including investing in training initiatives that help them level up, which in turn will elevate your entire company. Click here to explore the initiatives that can bring your talent to the next level.

An Expert Voice by Your Side

As the architect of high-impact initiatives, it is essential to look after yourself by designing routines that complement your work and align with your values and purpose. The key piece of wisdom here is that good habits will be there to serve you in challenging periods. When you build good habits during the smoother parts of the road, it will be much easier to strengthen and benefit from them when you really need them.

Your Founder’s Yoda can be a pivotal contributor to this level-up. By designing personalized tools, techniques, and resources, your Master Teacher adds value to your personal and professional journey, helping you step into the next level of your performance. Beyond providing expert guidance, this individual gets to know you deeply, is able to identify your strengths and areas of development and understands how they connect to your pursuits and your mission.

Are you looking for your own Founder’s Yoda? We are here to help.

Founder/Executive Coaching At a Glance

Have you ever wished to have Yoda by your side, helping you choose between the million paths ahead?

Have you ever wanted a co-founder to magically appear to help you make the hard decisions that keep you up all night? Have you ever wanted someone to do for you what you do for everyone else? Someone who sees your potential and has your back?

These are just some of the ways Therése has been described by her founder and C-level clients on the journey they have taken together, as she made sure they received the support they needed.

Therése has been empowering High Achieving individuals for 20 years through her transformative change programs where everything is done with a purpose.

Each journey starts with a first step based on your dreams and goals.

So the question is, whom do you wish was on your side, as you make your way through your own hero’s journey?

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