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Management and Leadership in Nonprofits

Management and Leadership in Nonprofits


Rest — Just Don’t Stop!

Sep 05, 2018
By: Tammy T. Jelinek

Leaders get tired. Leaders have long to-do lists. Leaders put out “fires.” Side note: My husband is a fire fighter, an advanced emergency medical technician and a police officer, and he often reminds me that what I call an emergency in the office may not be a true emergency.

Most importantly, leaders need rest. They need to:

  • Step back and take time to plan.
  • Celebrate the successes and the failures.
  • Slow down and take care of themselves.

But they can’t afford to stop.

This was a personal reminder to me, since it’s our annual performance evaluation time. And though I lead, I still must answer to others within response to results. It is a great reminder that what worked in the past is not always what will build the future. Others help me, but they don’t do my job — I have to do my job. It’s also a great reminder that although focusing and doing one thing at a time is ideal, there is a need to continue to reach for better. To juggle multiple priories in the event that one fails. To do better than before.

To quote an adage:  I can’t rest on my laurels. According to the History Revealed website, “To ‘rest on your laurels’ means that you get lazy or complacent about what you could achieve because you’re too busy basking in the memories of former glories.” Leaders can’t get caught up in what went well in the past; they must continue to train, try, learn, try, fail, try, succeed and keep trying.

I can afford to rest. I can’t afford to stop. And neither can you. So now may be a great time to ask yourself — how do I rest? How do I not rest on my laurels?

Wishing you a great day, and remember:  Lead with legacy.


Tammy Jelinek has over 20 years of experience in working in and with fabulous organizations. This blog will explore what it’s like for her to lead as a woman, as a GenXer, and as a person who truly wants to lead with legacy—meaning she wants to walk her talk. Tammy has presented training nationally across the United States, built businesses, coached amazing people and built a career in the squiggliest path known to man…or in this case, woman. She has a passion for being curious, helping people and making actions happen.

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Tammy T. Jelinek, MBA
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