I haven’t met a leader yet who doesn’t want whatever they’re working on to grow! There’s a reason you’re a leader and not a follower. You like to see things get to where they aren’t currently. Most of us who have been a leader for any length of time know that if we aren’t growing personally, we will actually become the “lid” to whatever it is that we are leading. The problem is that our personal growth doesn’t demand our attention like other things do. In fact unless there’s a major relational crisis, job loss or demotion we tend to put it aside, fully intending to “get to it.”
We rationalize and justify our lack of effort on our personal growth by explaining to ourselves (and sometimes to others) that we are “in a tough season and once we get through this we will address it”. Only to discover that the “tough season” never seems to end or when it does end, another season pops up right afterwards. So what do we do? If we don’t address this issue, ultimately it will end up limiting our leadership and the organization or team we lead. Just like failing to change the oil or do basic maintenance in a car will cause bigger challenges and a higher price tag. Trust me, as a leader, I’ve paid the higher price tag more times than I would like to admit for my leadership and lack of personal growth. So what’s the secret weapon? It’s just one word, but it’s implications are HUGE.
That word is “humility”. By telling ourselves that we will eventually get to it or that our role right now demands 110% of our attention devoted to the organization or team – we are lacking the necessary humility. However, it’s just a decision that can change the game for us! A decision to prioritize the long game over the short game. A decision to focus on the internal rather than just the external. A decision to ask for help and seek it out. Humility is the game changer for the leader. It is humility that will drive you to seek answers to questions you’ve been ignoring. It is humility that will cultivate a strong root system in your character rather than just living off of yesterday’s “fruit”.
Since I don’t know your specifics, I can’t prescribe your next steps to grow you personal life, your emotional intelligence, your relational focus points etc. but I can tell you the secret weapon which will unlock what it is that you do need to focus on: humility. Once you enact humility in your life you will begin to look a little deeper inside and discover that there are indeed a few things that could use some attention and potentially some change and growth.
I know for me, it was anxieties and insecurities that were at play underneath my dynamic leader exterior. In fact, I began to see how much they were robbing me of opportunities, relational health (not just at work but at home) and organizational culture development. I ended up starting a 10 year journey to healing and transformation that impacted far more than just anxiety and insecurity. But don’t miss the point – it all began with a little humility.
Today, I get to coach leaders, c-suite executives and team leads to become a non-anxious presence in their world through my work in the Calm and Confident Leader and my coaching business. Please feel free to reach out if you’re ready to devote some needed attention to your personal development. In the meantime, find ways to activate your secret weapon for maximum growth – humility is the key!