“Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right.” ~ Henry Ford
Think about all of the most successful makeovers you’ve seen in business or in personal lives. The biggest losers exercise their hearts out. Huge corporations go through major shakeups that skyrocket their bottom line. Ordinary people do extraordinary things. In each situation it takes someone stepping up as a transformative leader with a vision for how things can be better.
Transformation happens when intentional and mindful action is taken. It takes committed people rolling up their sleeves and wholeheartedly working toward a clearly defined goal, even if the odds are stacked against them. Waiting for the perfect circumstances has never been a key to success!
Uncertainties will never stop a transformative leader. Of course, they have doubts, fears, and limitations, but they move forward anyway. Transformative leaders may wish their circumstances were more favorable, but what makes them outstanding is that they start from where they are and keep moving forward, no matter what!
We all have the potential for being transformative leaders. As the old adage says, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” The transformative leader keeps looking for that way and doesn’t give up or give in to doubt. She doesn’t make excuses. She gets it done!
Do you wish you were that kind of person, but doubt you ever could be? I know you have it in you!
You can take the first steps toward showing up more fully as a transformative leader by developing or strengthening the following skills…
Keep your vision clear and strong. Never lose sight of your desired results. What you focus on becomes reality, so if you’re focusing on problems, they’re going to grow. Conversely, focusing on your vision keeps you in touch with your “Why”…why this is important to you, your family, your business, the world.
Choose full responsibility. Ultimately, what others do or don’t do should never be used as an excuse for your action or inaction. Of course, we don’t want to go it alone; it’s good to enlist the help of others. But when it comes right down to the nitty gritty, it’s your commitment that will keep the ball moving forward against all odds.
Keep your support system engaged. Everyone has a special gift, so encourage your team to build on your ideas and brainstorm strategies that get you from A to Z. Keep your ego in check. Resist any tendency to feel threatened when someone else shines. After all, it’s your team, it’s your project, it’s your guidance that lets them come up with innovative solutions. By their work, your brilliance is magnified.
Be mindful of your progress. You’ll keep yourself and others motivated by regularly acknowledging how far you’ve come. Transformative leaders recognize that all progress, small and great, is a cause for celebration! And this builds self-confidence. As David Storey said, “Self-confidence is the memory of success.”
Maintain momentum via baby steps. Stopping and starting, over and over again, makes everything harder. It doesn’t take big steps to keep moving forward. Be happy with baby steps.
Have a plan for the bad days. We all experience doubt and disappointment. Transformative leaders always have a backup plan for handling it. Perhaps it’s taking sufficient time off for some self-care to restore your energy. Or maybe it’s working with a coach to get you past a hurdle. Know yourself well enough to know what will get you out of the slump and back in the game.
As you read through this list, do you experience some resistance to any of the suggestions? Maybe you don’t feel like you can share your vision with others, or you don’t think you can afford to hire a coach. You can use that resistance as an indicator that this area deserves more of your attention right now.
When it comes right down to it, being a transformative leader just means you’re fully using your special gifts and owning your self-leadership. I’d love to help turn your dream into a reality. Please contact me and schedule an “Unlocking Your Potential” 30-minute complimentary consultation (in-person, by phone or via Skype). I’m confident that you can accomplish extraordinary things!
“When you realize nothing is lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” ~ Lao Tzu
Take a minute to visualize all the people you lead… who do you see? Do you see your child, employees, clients, colleagues? But do you also see yourself? Self leadership is the most important type of leadership there is, yet it’s often ignored.
By leading yourself first, you make intentional choices that help you lead all those other people in your life. If you’re not quite achieving the life you want or if you feel frustrated with the people you are leading, then it’s likely your self leadership could use some attention.
What do I mean that your self leadership skills need work?
Well, if you complain that your husband doesn’t communicate with you, it’s likely your communication skills need work. Or if you feel like your team is always blowing your business budget, perhaps your budgeting skills need work instead. Or if your goals are never completed on schedule, perhaps your time management skills need adjusted.
To fix any issue or problem, you’ll want to first look to see how your own behavior is contributing to it. After all, it’s not fair to ask something from them, if you can’t deliver it yourself. Of course, this doesn’t mean you need to strive for perfection. Rather, take a hint from Jack Kerouac when he said, “Rest and be kind, you don’t have to prove anything.” Make changes to be true to yourself and not to please someone else. When you master self leadership, you model behaviors and traits you want to see in the people around you, and they, in turn, will reflect those behaviors back to you.
No matter what your area of interest is, there are 7 self leadership principles you can apply to obtain greater success…
Embody your purpose. Instead of waiting for “some day”, take steps to start living your dreams today. If you haven’t created a roadmap, vision board, or outline of how you want your life and business to be like, it’s time to do so now. Identify what you want, why you want it, and when you want it. Give yourself as many specific details and time limits as you can. And start taking baby steps toward your dreams.
Practice mindfulness. Self-awareness is essential for identifying your behaviors, beliefs, strengths, and weaknesses. Only then can you make changes that support, not sabotage, the kind of life you wish to live.
Choose personal responsible. Take ownership of your decisions, actions and outcomes. Shifting the blame to someone else isn’t productive. It’s your choice in how you want to be in any given circumstance.
Deepen your emotional intelligence. By managing your emotions, you increase your self-confidence and learn to influence others positively.
Master self-discipline. All aspects of life require self-discipline, if you want to fully live. Getting out of bed, eating healthfully, exercising regularly, being financially responsible, maintaining a productive schedule, to name just a few, take getting tough with yourself, instead of pampering yourself.
Develop systems for life. To move forward, it’s vital to plan the route you wish to travel. This includes goals, life systems and micro-habits that support you in your quest for fulfillment.
“Adjust your dials.” Improve the quality of your life by heightening your mindful awareness of actions, thoughts, speech and emotions and how they are, or are not, serving you. When you make small, incremental changes to each area (family, career, physical well-being, spirituality, recreation, etc) or “dial in” your life, you’ll think in terms of creating life-transforming microhabits instead of vague, undefined goals that are unsupportable, like “going on a diet” for example.
Self leadership is all about the actions you take, the beliefs you cultivate, and the attitude you live by. I believe you can nurture and grow the leader within. To do so, I invite you to sign up for my newsletter, so you receive monthly doses of self leadership training. As you implement each suggestion, you’ll start to see tremendous personal and professional growth.
“I’ve found that what most people call luck is often little more than raw talent combined with the ability to make the most of opportunities.” ~ Timothy Zahn
“Some people just have all the luck!” Have you ever felt that way? Perhaps someone has even said that about you. Or maybe you’re still waiting for your “lucky break”? For many people, it’s easiest to drift through life, taking whatever comes. Waiting for your lucky break makes it easier to shift the blame to others for any failures that happen. After all, some people are just cursed with bad luck, right? Not at all! If you look at their life choices and their attitudes that prompted those choices, you’ll see why they’ve been having bad luck. You make your own luck by intentionally developing the empowering skills I’m going to share with you today.
The foremost requirement is taking responsibility for your actions. This is the springboard from which your luck-attracting mood, attitude and outlook will grow. Professor Richard Wiseman, a psychology chair at England’s University of Hertfordshire, conducted scientific research with a group of 400 exceptionally “lucky” and “unlucky” people from all walks of life. He discovered that “lucky” people possess four basic psychological traits:
- They know how to maximize opportunities.
- They listen to their intuition.
- They expect good fortune.
- They see the bright side of “bad luck”.
His conclusion makes perfect sense to me. It’s what I’ve observed in my own life, as well as, in the lives of my clients. Let’s examine how you can enhance each of these qualities in your own life…
1. Make your own luck by maximizing your opportunities.
Prepare now, so you can take advantage of any opportunity that comes your way. What do I mean? If your life is not in shape to support you as you step into something greater, you’ll tend to shrink back in fear.
Also when you build a strong network of positive influencers and supporters, you increase the likelihood that you’ll have greater opportunities opened to you. As you remain open to new experiences and enhance your curiosity you’ll see opportunities where others do not. This open outlook is a more positive and relaxed approach to life. You’ll see a difference in your choice of words, thoughts and body language, which, in turn, will attract people who can bring you your “lucky break”.
2. Make your own luck by listening to your intuition.
It takes quiet times and a practice of mindfulness to cultivate your intuitive powers. You have to be still to listen to what all your Parts are telling you. Once you do acquire a stronger intuition, it’s important that you don’t sabotage yourself by dismissing what it’s telling you.
3.Make your own luck by actively looking for the good.
What you look for is what you will see. Your thoughts become self-fulfilling prophecies. Therefore, why not always expect and look for the good, since that’s what you want to attract into your life. It heightens your expectations and broadens your focus and you’ll tend to act in a way that helps you achieve what you want. You won’t give up so easily either!
4. Make your own luck by cultivating resilience and transforming each negative into a positive.
Rather than being sucked into a vortex of bad luck, proactively turn your luck by examining each circumstance for how and why it makes you feel a certain way. Armed with this knowledge, consider how the situation was made worse by your actions or inaction and how you could have made it better. This in-depth contemplation will help you learn from each experience. It will keep you from passing a non-helpful judgment upon yourself. In this way, you shift your mood and prepare yourself to handle a similar future occurrence more effectively.
You don’t have to be manipulative to make your own luck. However, you can influence others to send opportunities your way by putting your A-game in place. Identify the goal you want to achieve and start living it! Dress like, talk like, think like, and act like it’s your reality already. Attract the right people by being of service to them. Then start specifically asking for what you want. The right people will notice you and send you “your lucky break”! No, it doesn’t happen by chance; luck happens by design.
Are you ready to make your own luck and watch extraordinary things happen in your life? I’d love to partner with you through this process. Please contact me and schedule an “Unlocking Your Potential” 30-minute complimentary consultation (in-person, by phone or via Skype). And don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter to stay up-to-date on some of the training opportunities I offer…including, Foundations of Life Coaching and NLP — September 26 to 29, 2019.
“Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere.” ~ Chinese Proverb
Daily we’re confronted with new things to learn — about ourselves, about others, about life on this beautiful planet and, yes, about business and technology, too. Some things we enjoy learning; other things are more of a chore. In fact, it can feel overwhelming at times trying to keep up with all of the things we have to learn. However, I am firmly convinced that lifelong learning is imperative for survival — our finances, mental health, and physical well-being depend on it! Besides, it just makes life more interesting.
There are different styles of learning. In school, we relied on memorizing facts until we took the test. Then we promptly forgot it. While memorization and gathering facts exercise the brain, the lifelong learning that serves us best is being able to see and implement the practical application of the information we’re receiving.
I’ve found that a mindfulness practice really assists me in assimilating information. It helps me to slow down and focus. I’m able to compare new information with what I already know and connect the dots. Then I can see how the new information can be used in many aspects of life.
Are you a lifelong learner? Lifelong learners have a number of characteristics in common.
- read books every day.
- skip TV and do something creative instead.
- exercise regularly because physical fitness makes them intellectually dynamic.
- like to challenge themselves and reach new goals.
- have diverse interests.
- never feel too old to learn.
- embrace discomfort, because they know there’s always a solution if you keep looking hard enough.
When lifelong learning is your way of life, you’ll have a competitive edge in today’s job market. You won’t feel stuck in your profession, because you know you can learn new skills that will advance your career and make you highly sought after as an expert in your field.
Being a lifelong learner slows down cognitive decline. Just as your body needs exercise, your brain does too. That’s why learning a complex skill like a new language or a musical instrument, is so good for you.
Lifelong learning makes you a happier and more interesting person. Boredom won’t rear its ugly head. You’ll always have something to talk about, so your conversations can be more deeply meaningful. There are so many benefits from lifelong learning.
As Leonardo da Vinci said,
“Learning is the only thing the mind never exhausts, never fears, and never regrets.”
The only downside to being a lifelong learner is if you hoard the information and never use it. That would be like having millions of dollars, but you’re homeless and starving. For example, you can use your learning to reinvent yourself in the following ways:
What changes would you like to make? Sometimes it can be challenging to take the leap from knowing information and using information in a positive and productive manner. I invite you to contact me and schedule an “Unlocking Your Potential” 30-minute complimentary consultation (in-person, by phone or via Skype). Let’s talk about the skills you have and the skills you still need to acquire to create the life you’ve always wanted.
Would you like to read more on this topic? Here are some of my other blog posts about lifelong learning:
Great Leaders Never Stop Learning – Have You?
Interested in Continuous Learning? How Adding Slack to Your Day Helps
Embodied Learning – A Lifelong Practice that Leads to Excellence and Mastery
And sign up for my newsletter to stay up-to-date on some of the training opportunities I offer…including, Foundations of Life Coaching and NLP coming up September 26 to 29, 2019.
“We need to reshape our own perception of how we view ourselves. We have to step up as women and take the lead.” ~ Beyoncé
No matter what we’re trying to achieve, there always seem to be an in-between stage that gets us stuck. For example, you hit a plateau when you’re losing weight. Or you have to spend money you don’t have to make money. Or you’re working on developing leadership skills, but you have no one to lead. Or you want to build your coaching business, but you need coaching experience to attract new clients.
That in-between place isn’t comfortable, because it tests your faith in your dream, your belief in yourself, and your commitment to growth. These growing pains are a natural part of life and aren’t to be avoided. Rather embrace them as indicators that you are ready for the next level. Get excited about them. Don’t dread them.
Louise Santiago, Niina Gullsten and I have just completed this year’s Women: Bring Forth the Leader Within Retreat. I am feeling grateful, inspired and blessed! It was amazing and awe-inspiring to watch the women attendees courageously face and overcome doubt and indecision, as they worked on developing their leadership skills more fully.
Over the course of our time together, a common theme kept appearing: A person succeeds when developing leadership skills becomes a daily practice. Here are some tips we discussed:
Become more intentional. Whether it’s in regard to your relationships, business, or personal well-being, the more intentional and thoughtful your decisions become the better outcomes you will experience. Mindfulness is foundational to being intentional, for it builds within you a strong sense of identity and purpose. If you find yourself just drifting through life, take some time to mindfully reflect on where you really want to go and who you want to be.
Expand your circle of influence. Cultivate conversations and relationships with people who have different experiences and backgrounds. This diversifies your view of the world and lets you learn valuable lessons about yourself. It will reveal your strengths (e.g. patience) and your weaknesses (e.g. prejudices). Your communication skills will be tested, since you’ll be out of your comfort zone and you’ll want to pay closer attention to what’s being said and how it’s being said. But testing your conversation muscles is a win-win, because communication skills are paramount for developing leadership skills.
Step into leadership opportunities, as they come your way. Volunteering in your community is a great way to gain experience. Mentoring young women is a wonderful way to ensure our future is brighter. Even if you only lead one person toward achieving success, you will have accomplished a lot.
Developing leadership skills becomes more organic and intuitive, and less painful, when you look for opportunities in your daily life to practice them. Don’t be afraid to step up. Our recent retreat reminded us that women are amazingly powerful, beautifully humble, and awe inspiring as they support each other and step forward in all aspects of their life! Make a commitment to yourself and join us in 2020 for another great adventure.
Or if you’re ready to get started right now, please contact me and schedule an “Unlocking Your Potential” 30-minute complimentary consultation (in-person, by phone or via Skype). I’d love to share with you some of the new insights I’ve gained from this fabulous group of women.