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Launching Into Leadership - Miruspoint Facilitators

Welcome back to our blog and thanks for your interest!

I hope you had a great summer… I sure did!

I recently attended a convention and the theme for it, was “IGNITED.” What a great theme for a convention… and for life! What are you ignited about (great topic for dinner conversation)?

As I was thinking about what really ignites me, leadership was at the top of the list. I am fascinated and intrigued about leadership: what it really is, and questions like, “Are we each a leader… and what does it take to be a great leader?”

So here we go – first question,

What is Leadership?

Well many, many people have written about this, and I honour and appreciate their wisdom. Instead of starting with what others say, let’s go inside and see what our own answer is to this question.

What would you say is leadership? Close your eyes, take a breath and relax into the question – “what is leadership?”

Having just done this internal check, the answer that came to me is sustained inspiration. I have been inspired many times listening to great speakers or hearing about incredible acts of courage, but I wouldn’t say they were necessarily (for me) a leader. So being inspired is one component, and the other part is sustained action. Do they, day after day, show up in a way that inspires and encourages me to be my very best? What’s your answer?

Next question – Are we each a leader, or could we be?

The answer of course is, YES! BUT… is that really the way we each think about ourselves? As a parent do you think of yourself as a leader? In my experience as a parent and as a counselor, parents more often think of themselves as teachers and guides for their children. This may be true, but this perspective is at least one step removed from true leadership. And even further away, on those challenging days when we default to managing and directing our children. So why do we step away from the idea that we, as parents, are leaders? And more importantly, would we behave differently, if we knew we were a leader for our children?

What about in business? Are you a leader, even if you work for someone else? What if you are the sole owner of a business? Or if you work for a company, or organization, but aren’t in an assigned leadership role?

Robert Pirsig, author of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, describes in his book Lila, what he calls “static and dynamic” leadership. I’m not really keen of the labels he has chosen but I love the concepts – leadership that supports and maintains a system, he calls static leadership, and leadership that innovates or emerges from a present need, is dynamic leadership. These two types of leadership, working together, allow a system (family an organization or a business) to have both stability and growth.

I believe the more people who recognize they are a leader the more opportunities will arise to be a leader, inspiring or supporting.

The Leadership Challenge

So, what if we start off this September and set an intention to be a leader, capital L or small l? You can lead through your presence – embodying the love or compassion you feel, you can lead by your curiosity about life and learning, you can lead through actions, such as random acts of kindness and you can also lead by directly sharing a skill or talent.
Try on the phrase, “I am a leader”. How does it sound to you?

Calling yourself a leader evokes a bigger frame, it’s more expansive and it may carry some limiting beliefs or unwanted expectations. For a clearer sense of where you are at, rate yourself on a scale of 0 – 10, with 0 meaning “no I am not a leader at all” and 10 meaning “I absolutely know I am a leader.” Now over the next month let’s see if we can raise this number.

If you find yourself uncomfortable with the idea of being a leader, I encourage you to look at your beliefs about leadership. Ask yourself if those beliefs are really, absolutely true? This month I will be exploring facets of leadership, fears and limiting beliefs about it and how to step into more leadership. And lastly, why it matters if we step forward into leadership. On this note here is a quote to savor for the week:

“Our chief ‘want’ is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.”

—Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Are you someone who inspires others? If not, why not start now?

Have a great week and let me know how your foray into leadership goes!