For some of these blogs, I have decided to take one of the questions from the self-care inventory and reflect on it. I hope to jump between categories so that I can create a dialogue about some of the critical questions around self-care that come up on the inventory. I try to look at it once a week, but there is a lot there and sometimes I know I won’t stop to really think about a question. The question, ‘What books have I read recently? Do I carve out time to read? Is all of my reading ministry related?’ is something that we need to consider when it comes to our self-care.
Leaders must maintain their intellectual health. The demands of ministry can make it very difficult to carve out time to sharpen your mind, especially when it comes to reading. Most of the intellectual care that ministry leaders engage in is related to seminars, classes, conferences and ministry related reading and study. These things are good and important to the continuing education of any leader, but they should not be the only things that are a part of our intellectual self-care. Reading should be a regular part of any leaders life as reading is a great way to sharpen the mind and to keep a healthy, diverse and balanced perspective on leadership, life and ministry. Our reading should not be limited to a ministry focus. There are many books that can be read that do not have a ministry focus that sharpen our ministry leadership and give us a different perspective. Our reading should include secular and sacred works. Reading in the areas of leadership, business and general fiction can not only serve to aid in self-care, but it strengthens us as leaders. Reading is a key means to learning and should be a priority for all leaders.