The business owners and senior managers I know who are really good leaders are frequently tired. It’s a good tired, but tired nonetheless. It’s a lot like the tired you get from a spirited game of tennis, a fairly serious jog or, in my case, a long bike ride. It’s not a “lay down on the couch” tired, rather an invigorating, satisfying kind of tired.

The late singer and songwriter, Harry Chapin shared some thoughts from his grandfather on this:
“My grandfather was a painter. He died at age 88. He illustrated Robert Frost’s first two books of poetry. He was looking at me one day and he said, `Harry, there’s two kinds of tired. There’s good tired and there’s bad-tired. Ironically enough, bad-tired can be a day in which you won, but you won other people’s battles, you lived other people’s days, other people’s agendas and dreams, and when it’s all over, there’s very little you in there, and when you hit the hay at night, you toss and turn, you don’t settle easy.
Good tired, ironically enough, can be a day in which you lost, but you knew you fought your battles, you chased your dreams, you lived your days. And when you hit the hay at night, you settle easy, you sleep the sleep of the just, and you can say, “Take me away.”
Harry, all my life I wanted to be a painter. So I painted. God, I would have loved to have been more successful. But I painted and painted. And I am good tired, and they can take me away.”

Interestingly, those who are working for something larger than themselves, investing time and effort into good leadership and practical and useful management are, more often that not, “all in.” They are going to be tired. The question is will they be satisfied or exhausted? The graphic below, from Luc Galoppin, says it all:

As Luc would say, “The question is not how tired you are, but rather how you are tired: satisfied or exhausted?”

In Other Words…

“A conclusion is the place where you got tired thinking.” – Martin Henry Fischer

“Oh, there’s no such thing as my favorite performance. I can’t sit here today and look back, and say, Top Hat was better than Easter Parade or any of the others. I just don’t look back, period. When I finish with a project, I say ‘all right, that’s that. What’s next?” – Fred Astaire, 1978

“Trust men, and they will be true to you; treat them greatly, and they will show themselves great.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson, Essays, On Prudence

“Nothing we do is more important than hiring & developing people. At the end of the day you bet on people, not on strategies.” Larry Bossidy

“What creates trust, in the end, is the leader’s manifest respect for the followers.” – Jim O’Toole, Leading Change

“Life is not a journey to the grave with intentions of arriving safely in a pretty well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out and loudly proclaiming … WOW! What a ride!” – Anon

“Immense power is acquired by assuring yourself in your secret reveries that you were born to control affairs.”  – Andrew Carnegie

In The Word…

“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”    – Isaiah 40:29-31 (NIV)



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