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Are you afraid of being called “lazy”?

If someone watched my day-to-day life, they might call me lazy. And you know what, I wouldn’t judge them for that. I do spend a lot of my time doing stuff that lazy people do — like taking naps and staring out the window at the snow that’s falling on the trees…

But I’m not afraid of being called lazy. Because I know I’m not. I survived 5 years of grad school, 10 years in the publish-or-perish culture of academia, and 2 years of building a business.

But I digress…

Answer “Yes” if this sounds like you:

*Do you walk around at work trying to “look busy” (whether you’re busy or not)?

*Are you worried your boss will think less of you if you leave early every Friday?

*If someone at work appears to be enjoying a quiet moment of solitude, do you judge that person, thinking, “Oh boy, must be nice to have nothing to do”?

*Are you afraid that, if you’re not constantly in the weeds, getting your hands dirty with your team, people will think you’re an incompetent manager?

If you answered “Yes” to any of these, you might be afraid of getting pinned with the Lazy Label.

And look, don’t get me wrong: If you’re ACTUALLY lazy — if you ACTUALLY don’t give a damn, then you earned that label fair and square.

But, if you DO give a damn, if you desperately want to do a good job, if you lead from a place of TOTAL INTEGRITY and you STILL answered “Yes” to any of the questions above, then it’s time to think hard about what’s important.

What’s important is getting stuff done. What’s important is guiding your team to success. What’s important is building relationships and building rapport. You know, LEADING!

If you’re doing all that, you DESERVE and NEED those quiet moments. You get to, from time to time, stare out the window and let your mind wander. If someone thinks you’re LAZY for doing this, that’s their problem, not yours. Let them judge you and move on.

I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again: Leadership is hard. Especially when you’re doing it right. Don’t let the fear of being called “lazy” keep you from enjoying much needed moments of R&R.

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Written by

Career Coach for Tech Managers. I help tech managers upgrade their careers, their teams, their paychecks, and their lives.

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