Top 3 Ways CEOs Stay Calm And How You Can Emulate Them

Surina PiyadasaSurina Piyadasa, a Nationally-recognized Coach to CXOs, Fund Managers and Entrepreneurs talk on ways CEOs stay calm and how you can emulate them. Continue after the cut.

As a Coach to CEOs for 10+ years, here's what I've observed about those leaders who excel at staying calm under pressure.

Top 3 Ways CEOs Stay Calm

#1 Leader, know thyself

As we know, stress impacts every leader differently.  For some, it can manifest as a racing heart, tense muscles or perspiration.  For others, counting sheep in the middle of the night becomes a ritual.  Self-awareness is a leadership strength.   Listen to what your body is trying to tell you.  Treat your body with kindness and it will be good to you.

#2 Breathe 

Slow and controlled breathing from the diaphragm is a natural tranquilizer to quiet your mind and body.  NOTE:  This is different from lung-centric breathing, which can be rapid and shallow.

Here's how: 
Inhale (from your diaphragm), slowly through the nose for a count of three.  If you have done this correctly, you will feel the area above your belly expand instead of your chest. Without effort, exhale slowly through your mouth for a count of six.

Repeat the exercise three more times.  If you feel yourself becoming light headed, take it slow.  With intention, practice this mind/body calming technique several times a day until it becomes muscle memory.

#3 Positive mindset

 Positivity is a common trait in CEOs who stay calm, even when drinking from the fire hose  The good news: a positive mindset can be developed with willingness, commitment and iterative execution.  If you happen to be one of those leaders whose mind immediately steers towards what could go wrong, perhaps it's time for a mental reboot.

Roman Emperor, Marcus Aurelius had some keen insight about positivity with these pearls, “Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them.” 

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