10 Ways For You To Become A More Conscious Leader
By Stephane Leblanc, Founder and CEO, International Centre for Conscious Leadership
If you have been paying attention to the news around the world, you have surely noticed that humanity is facing many big challenges and maybe you have asked yourself how you can effect positive change as a leader for your team, your organization and the world.
Often we are quick to point the finger at political leaders and CEO's as we wish that they would lead more consciously, but we also forget that all of us can make a positive difference as leaders no matter what our level of responsibility is by choosing to become a more conscious leader.
Conscious leadership matters a lot as when we are more conscious as a leader, everything we do is done from a higher level of consciousness with the intention to make a positive difference in the lives of those we lead and those we serve as well in society in general.
If you are ready to choose to be a more conscious leader, you can embrace some or all of these ways to be more conscious in your leadership.
1. Practice mindfulness
To be a conscious leader, we first need to be conscious. All of us are conscious as soon as we wake up but are we really conscious? With the abundance of distractions in our lives which have only gotten worse with the omnipresence of technology in our lives, many of us are somewhere but not really there. As John Kabat-Zinn said in his book titled: "Wherever you go, there you are", we can drastically transform our lives by embracing mindfulness and presence which we can develop though the practice of meditation. All it takes is 10 to 15 minutes a day to start being much more mindful. If you have never meditated, you can start by using some apps on your phone and use some guided meditations.
2. Start your transformation journey
For most of us, the path to become a more conscious leaders requires us to start a journey of transformation so we can discover the fears and limiting beliefs we inherited from our parental and societal programming that are well anchored in our sub-conscious so we can live according to our values. As demonstrated by Carl Jung, transformation can happen when we make the unconscious conscious. By discovering our fears and limiting beliefs, we can assess how they have served us and what possibilities open up by overcoming them.
3. Embrace personal mastery
Most people are in reaction mode when it comes to their emotions. As they are unaware of their triggers, they react and do not choose the most adequate action. They often have a victim mindset as they blame others for their negative emotions. By discovering about our triggers and what gets us upset such as others words, behaviours and actions, we can learn to manage ourselves better.
4. Be in service
Most people are driven by their ego needs. By choosing to focus on others needs and being in service to them, we can make a difference on others lives. This can be done by focusing on the development of our team members or providing amazing experiences to our clients.
5. Set a clear vision
Most leaders or organizations don't have a clear vision. It is usually clear for most employees in business that the company wants to make money but this is not enough to inspire people. An inspiring vision will usually touch people hearts and make them feel that they are contributing to a greater purpose.
6. Be grateful
Gratitude is one of the highest vibration emotion. By being being grateful, we can feel love and joy in our hearts. By appreciating what we have, we have more. By focusing on what we are missing, we have less. As a leader, expressing gratitude allows us to be trusted and gain respect, appreciation and engagement from our team members.
7. Have a growth mindset
As documented by Carole Dweck in her book Mindset, people either have a growth mindset or a fixed mindset. People with a growth mindset see every setback and failure as an opportunity to learn and grow and people with a fixed mindset see failures as a proof that they are a failure. Conscious leaders build a growth mindset culture in their organization by recognizing efforts and learnings instead of their team member and not just results and they recognize that failures are essential to an innovation culture.
8. Be a generous listeners
Most of us have been trained in public speaking but few of us have been trained in listening, so most of us are not really good at it. Listening is a transformation act as being heard is one of the most basic needs. By choosing to listen generously as leaders, we can focus on others with no agenda which allows us to connect authentically and create new possibilities.
9. Be authentic and vulnerable
We life in a society that values the superficial and it is often scary for people to be authentic. You can transform culture of your organization by creating an environment where it is safe for people to be authentic and vulnerable. The best way to do this is to embrace this yourself and show your team that you have no need to be a super hero.
10. Embrace your feminine and masculine power
All of us have in use feminine and masculine energies. This is true for both men and women. Most women in business have learned to embrace their masculine energy as it is essential to thrive in a business world that is mostly led by men but very few men have embraced their feminine energy as it is often seen as a sign of weakness. The result is what many of us are not embracing our wholeness and are depriving ourselves of essential characteristics that would allow us to become more conscious leaders.
By embracing some or all these ways of becoming a more conscious leader, you will discover a new way of being a leader and you will certainly increase your effectiveness as a leader by making a difference on many levels.
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