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The Leaders' Hour, pt. 2

A recent blog entry about The Leader’s Hour generated some interest in what practices a leader engages to start their day off right. While not a perfect approach, here are the five things I do to start my day off well. What would you add to this list?

  • Scripture reading and reflection. For the past four years, I’ve been using a through-the-Bible-in-a-year program as part of the OliveTree bible app on my iPad. This disciplined approach to working through both the Hebrew Scriptures and the New Testament has done wonders for my soul.
  • Focused Leadership Readings in Axiom by Bill Hybels, Leadership Prayers by Richard Kreigbaum, and The Valley of Vision edited by Arthur Bennett. I find these three books to be so good for my soul and leadership practice, that when I finish each of them, I simply go back to the start and begin again. I typically get through Hybels’ book twice or more each year. Kreigbaum’s book is good for three or four readings a year. The Valley of Vision is much slower going; this is one of those books that reads me as I read it; if I can finish it in a year, that’s ambitious.
  • Prayer. Earlier this year a good friend introduced me to the Prayermate app. For the first time in many years, I have an organized, consistent time of prayer each day. Most importantly: I’m actually praying for the people and things I promise to pray for.
  • Strategic Questions: I am responsible for three business entities as well as my family. Therefore, I have four questions I reflect on each day: What is the greatest contribution I can make to each entity in the next six weeks? What is the greatest contribution I can make to my family in the next six weeks?
  • Calendar and ToDo list review. Last (and it is important, leader, that this is done last, after the more important things listed above) but definitely not least, I spend time in front of my calendar and task list. I’ve recently moved this part of my life to the Pocket Informant app on my iPhone and iPad and it’s corresponding Mac software program, Informant. This program syncs with both iCal and ToodleDo, and keeps all my devices in unison while giving me a GTD approach to organizing and viewing both my calendar events and my tasks for the day, week and month ahead.