Leadership. It’s one of those words that for a long time has felt inaccessible to most people. Like it belongs only in big corporate training programs or in politics (and we know how that’s turning out).
Or at least it did for me, and I’ve worked in the business of developing leaders for years.
I believe that Leadership now is a word, and a state of being, for everyone. Understanding how to lead, for you and I, is more important now more than ever.
It’s important because it’s up to each and everyone of us to ‘be the change’. We can’t expect good things from others if we don’t live it ourselves.
Leadership is not about telling people what to do, it’s about being a beacon.
We’re all a beacon for someone in our lives and our work. We all influence other people in our lives, one way or another. We’re all leading in one way or another.
You have friends, colleagues, family, clients, children, sport team mates, good people that work for you and believe in the business or idea that you’re building. All these people in your life see, hear and are influenced by what you do and say. Our influence is much broader than we think. You lead, you are a beacon in other people’s lives.
We all have the capacity to lead, it’s simpler and more accessible to all of us than we think.
What can you do to bring out the leader in you?
1. Know your values
What’s important to you in life and work? What drives you? What brings you joy? What is non-negotiable? Pursue your interests through your values, not the other way round.
2. Connect with people
Listen, ask questions, show empathy, seek to understand where others are coming from. We all have varied and valuable experiences and a different lens in which we see the world through.
3. Find your voice and use it well
Express your opinion and understand that it is just that. Don’t get angry or rejected if others disagree with you.
4. Make decisions from a place of love, not fear
When you are next deciding on a course of action, think to yourself; Am I choosing this response/approach/decision from a place of love or because I’m fearful of being rejected, left behind, not liked? It’s one of the most powerful intentions I set for myself. Try it.
5. Understand and take responsibility for your feelings & emotions
They are yours and only yours, no one else forces them upon you.
But how, I hear you cry!
The first step is an on-going practice of getting to know yourself, here’s a few things that can help:
Start there and see what unfolds for you…
I’ll leave you with a powerful quote from Deepak Chopra:
“Becoming a leader is the most crucial choice one can make — it is the decision to step out of the darkness into the light”.
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