Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Self-Leadership: How Critical is It?

"Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes..." C. Jung

Leadership is all about CHANGE. With all the talk about leadership, there is relatively little about self-leadership, yet we each need to step up to ask: Who are we? Do we want to change things? Why aren’t we being the change we want to see? What’s stopping us from changing ? There's no advantage to trying to reshape things as there will be no success until people understand the big WHY and are willing to accept the change. Self-leadership: How critical could it be?

Self-leadership proceeds leading others. To know oneself is necessary to understand the filters and the bias. It’s important to looking inward. All real change takes courage, as the old guard will always fight for the "Status Quo." The willingness to go full steam, straight against the tide, always requires a strong inner belief that something better will emerge, hence the revolution. Self-reflection makes you more emphatic as a leader: Which quality makes you a strong leader? The advanced mindset or the exemplary behavior? The broad knowledge or profound wisdom? All our external battles have roots within us. All conflict starts on the inside and is projected outward. Therefore, it is necessary to love oneself before you can love others.

It's about being the change - and thus inspiring adaptability in others.The challenge is, if you want others to follow, you've got to adapt how you lead. Not just repeat what you've done before in other situations, but what's needed in this particular circumstance - with this team and their particular challenges. So do you have learning agility to continually update your knowledge? Of course, new knowledge depends on previous knowledge, but this does not mean that what is new is limited by what came before. Some new ideas are a leap--a creative insight, not just a logical incremental step from what currently is. Yes, it takes courage which few have, to advance an idea that is not commonly held or acceptable by the majority; this is likely why new bold ideas come from the edges and not the center. From a strategic perspective, it's also planning matters. And leadership at present is the missing link in business planning. You would think that adaptation would lead us into a better model, and in time, it will. If we do not adopt a new economic model based on “win-win,” the “Win-Lose” will make us all losers in the end.

A leader’s individual journey is over the long haul and the goal should be to continually improve. It's a challenge and a responsibility of a leader to strive to do the right thing. Furthermore, if you remain open and keep reaching to learn more and positively impact as many people as you can, then the possibilities are limitless (sky's the limit). The lessons learned and remaining open have enabled you to understand that followers are able to do amazing things when given the opportunity and as a leader, you can help create this. Change happens where logic, education, and desire replace ignorance and hopelessness! Where creativity and innovation come together to promote self-leadership, positive change equates to RESULTS! Thought-provoking ideas, ignite creative statements and using them to manifest new ideas, constructively challenging the limits of traditional thinking and exploring the reasons why we do the things we do. However, to do self-leadership requires taking risks and feeling fear because what you are then communicating to those around you comes from inside you, from the unconventional wisdom, or the invisible. This goes very much against millennium of evolution and most importantly tends to separate that person from their peer group. But this is also the very quality to be an authentic leader and a transformative change agent to drive changes.

Change, growth, self-leadership is the result and the ability to challenge oneself beyond the constraints of tradition. Self-leadership based on self-reflection and self-evaluation empowers us to “be the change we want to see in the world and therefore enhancing our quality of life.” Taking this to the next level, leadership is needed now more than ever in all aspects of our world.


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