Overfunctioning comes from saying yes too often.
This month we interviewed Lola Wright, leader of Bodhi Spiritual Center, a Chicago based nonprofit. Lola, like may leaders, especially those in the nonprofit sector, is regularly questioning whether she is being generous with others (above the line) or hero-ing them (below the line).
Leaders tend to overfunction—say yes when no is a better and more honest answer—because they want to avoid feeling disappointed by the outcome or being with others who are disappointed when they say no.
We encourage these leaders to go on a “NO” diet. For several weeks, we ask that they initially say no to all invitations and requests, including independently putting anything else on their own plates The goal is to stay present and non-reactive while saying no. From this conscious state, they then may choose to shift to a yes.
What most leaders discover is that their ability to be effective increases as they honor their noes. They find they create more time to nurture their personal relationships, take care of their physical well being, and focus on leading from their zone of genius.
Are you ready for a “NO” diet? (After you answer this question, of course!) Try it this month and let us know what you discover.