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  • Writer's pictureSherry

Julie Farbaniec is Reflecting Back

I met Julie Farbaniec several years ago and cheered her on when learning one year ago that she launched her own firm, Leadership Enthusiast. She defines that term enthusiast as a person who displays eager enjoyment in a particular subject. It is a perfect name for her company for she is passionate about all things related to leadership development.

Prior to launching her firm, she spent over 12 years at Blizzard Entertainment and during that time learned critical lessons about what is needed for creative teams to thrive. She is also on the Board of Girl Scouts of Orange County and loves supporting young women in building their overall l leadership capabilities. We met at a wonderful Girl Scouts event, back when we were attending celebrations in person!

As we kick off the New Year, I thought it would be great to share some of her wisdom about setting intentions for a new beginning.

Julie believes in a “strategic pause” especially for anyone in a leadership role. She states, “In a world where responsibilities are always added to your plate, slowing down in order to go fast is essential to good problem solving and critical thinking. It creates space for intentional actions, being curious, quality over quantity, and a focus on priorities with the biggest impact. Who doesn’t want more of that? Or should I say, who doesn’t need more of that?”

She endorses the act of reflecting on our own progress. And this excerpt from her recent posting is part of her 2021 lessons learned. Enjoy and thank you Julie.

FROM JULIE MUSINGS January 12, 2022

1. Run your own race. Starting my own business and having the opportunity to coach leaders doing the same, reinforced the notion that comparison will quickly kills confidence, a sense of progress, and a host of other things. Focus on you, what matters most to your product and your teams, and run your own pace. Looking around at others only pulls you off track.

2. Minimize unhealthy escapism. Getting rid of Twitter was a game changer! My overall happiness improved measurably.

3. Storytelling is powerful. It helps connect and create clarity. Leaders take note: a good story, especially one that is personal, can inspire those around you. Plus, getting connected to my own story provided me another source of motivation in moving towards my goals.

4. Practice Positive Intelligence. Shirzad Chamine’s book, Positive Intelligence helped me quiet my very harsh inner critic. As an added bonus, it has been a significant unlock for a lot of my coaching clients. I can’t recommend it enough.

5. No one has it all figured out. And I mean no one. Despite what you see on the outside, every person is dealing with their own demons or insecurities. This leads back to lesson #1.

6. Take one extra PTO day after your vacation. Somehow that one day to unpack, do laundry, and chill makes a world of difference. I don’t know why I never did this before.

7. Put back your shopping cart. Don’t leave it next to your car. The little things matter now more than ever. Small acts of kindness and leaving things better than how you found them make a difference to our world. Do your part in taking care of this place, your company, and each other.

8. Vision boards work. I hate to admit it, but I used to frequently poo-poo the idea of a vision board. I was so wrong. It’s powerful to see a visual representation of what you want. A big thank you to the Hudson Institute for waking me up to that.

9. Discover healthy diversions. For me, jigsaw puzzles are soothing as hell, especially when you see crazy stuff happening all over the world. Somehow the small act of finding the right pieces gives me a temporary feeling of control when things feel uncontrollable. Exercise and meditation continue to be my go-to’s here too.

10. If I don’t clean up as I go, there will be a bigger mess later. Invest the required time and energy up front. It always costs more if you wait. For example, managers, this is your nudge to deal with that person who is under performing now to avoid a bigger and more expensive problem later.

11. Writing feels good. It’s a form of expression I didn’t know I craved. Plus, it’s rewarding to share things I deeply care about to help strengthen my “it’s ok to be vulnerable” muscle.

12. Girlfriends are my force multiplier. I am so grateful to have a full tribe of women that listen, care, and lift me up. Give gratitude to the community of folks that help you be better.

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