Psychotherapy, Executive Coaching & Consultancy London & Kent

Why Work-Life Harmony Matters in Leadership

Leaders stepping up to the helm of a company can have an atmosphere of dynamism, unwavering commitment and success; however, it isn’t just about the victories. Behind powerful leadership decisions and insightful strategies, there’s often a human story, one that’s deeply personal and seldom spoken about.

A CEO (or any C-suite leader) is a human being first. In their personal lives, they will likely experience the joys and triumphs of living, as well as setbacks and occasional bumps in the road. If fortunate, they may flourish without much issue. However, during times of chronic stress, even if all seems well from the outside, many leader have a tendency to press on and keep going. This can create feelings of isolation, overwhelm, resentment, weariness and anxiety. In fact, growing research shows that around 70% of global C-suite leaders are experiencing all-time high levels of stress and burnout and just as many have a desire to quit. This is understandable given the considerable responsibility on their shoulders to steer their company to continued success, more recently through tough social, health, and economic change.

Research focused on high-profile CEOs’ personal lives illustrates that significant shifts in personal life can echo throughout their entire organisation. When these personal and professional worlds intersect, an integrated executive coach isn’t just helpful; it can be essential.

Well-being Equals Success

Integrated executive coaching is delivered by dual-qualified and accredited professionals in psychotherapy and coaching, sometimes called therapist-coaches. This approach often blends the goal-oriented, future-focused, and results-driven energy and structure of coaching with the key underpinnings of psychotherapeutic theory. It can do more than help CEOs refine their leadership skills. It helps overcome personal blocks, boost holistic well-being, and increase self-awareness, enabling personal and professional goals achievement. After all, well-being is directly tied to how well people function at work.

Professor Oswald from the University of Warwick had this to say after some noteworthy research:

“Companies like Google have invested more in employee support, and employee satisfaction has risen. It rose by 37% for Google, and they know what they are talking about. Under scientifically controlled conditions, making workers happier pays off.”

This is true not just for workers, but also for their CEOs.

The pulse of an organisation often matches the heartbeat of its leader. If a CEO finds themselves lost amidst considerable personal storms (e.g. marital, familial, health-related, parental, or legal) without tailored support, it can inadvertently seep into their leadership approach and skew organisational outcomes, with significant impact. Areas affected can include the leader’s level of risk aversion, performance, decision-making, innovation, work relationships, governance and financial decisions, etc.   This is of concern given the disproportionately high level of influence a CEO has over a company. But a CEO who feels more aligned and at peace in their life, or at the very least, is moving through difficulties with the proper support, such as with the help of an executive coach? They are more likely to naturally weave that clarity and care for themselves and others into their daily interactions. This contributes to a considered, safe, inclusive, empathetic, and high-performing work environment.

Creating A Rich Life, Not Just A Busy One

Leaders who are deeply passionate about their careers can often invest considerable time and energy into their work, sometimes at the expense of other areas and relationships in their lives. It’s been observed that CEOs clock in a hefty 62.5 hours a week on average. CEOs can benefit significantly from striking a healthy balance, but it’s not just about splitting time equally. These leaders, with a therapist-coach by their side, can benefit from channelling energy into creating greater equilibrium between multiple competing responsibilities.

In today’s world, there’s a slowly growing cultural respect for leaders who are willing to be vulnerable, advocating for mental well-being and a life that’s rich, not just busy. These CEOs often lead by example, speaking up and embodying the message that there is no shame in seeking help and creating work-life harmony. By revealing their own vulnerability, they also create a culture here their teams feel they can do so, driving improved performance, innovation and success.

Work-Life Harmony Questions To Consider

How can you tell if you need greater work-life harmony? It can be helpful to honestly consider the following questions.

As a CEO (or C-Suite Leader)

  • Do you find yourself feeling stressed, isolated, anxious, or overwhelmed?
  • Are you feeling a loss of purpose and passion?
  • Are you and your organisation excelling from the outside, but do you not feel your best physically, mentally or emotionally?
  • Do you feel some discomfort about honestly speaking up?
  • Do you have numerous responsibilities that you find progressively challenging to meet, sometimes impacting others?
  • Have you experienced had a sudden, stressful, or major life event that is affecting your life as a whole?
  • Are you concerned that sharing difficulties with others may negatively affect your reputation ?
  • Do you work in a culture where wellbeing is not the done thing to speak about?
  • Do you know the right things to do but somehow can’t muster the energy or enthusiasm to complete them?
  • Do you feel perpetually exhausted, even after a short rest period?

If the answer to any of the questions above is ‘yes’, it could be time to seek support to remedy these concerns, and find relief and balance.

Remember that therapy or coaching might just be the transformational conversation you need.

A New Way Forward

Accessing confidential, discreet, and non-judgmental therapist-coach space can provide CEOs with a safe haven to identify and actualise personal and work-related aspirations, offload stressors, process difficulties, make decisions and create sustainable transformation. There are plenty of tips on starting therapy or integrated executive coaching if you or your organisation aren’t sure where to start.

To any quietly suffering CEOs or procurement professionals reading this, please don’t wait for things to worsen! Discreet and personally tailored support can help you create beneficial changes, whether psychotherapy or integrated executive coaching via well-being or mindset coaching.

If you’re unsure about whether therapy or coaching is the right support or, you’re curious to know more about how it all works? We have you covered!

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