(Part 1 of 3)
I always thought leadership was something you were born with. Something very few lucky ones simply had embed in their gene code. It gave them charisma, eloquence, influence, stature and courage. It gave them special powers to ignite a crowd, raise consciousness, inspire movements.
Little did I know that leadership is actually a set of skills.
Leadership, as it turns out, is something you learn. Not necessarily something you are born with.
Are there naturally born leaders? Yes there are. Can it be learned? You bet!
Charisma, eloquence and all those other beautiful traits that usually accompany our image of a leader can only take you so far. Those traits, as alluring as they are, do not make a leader.
Skills make a leaders. Learned skills.
Skills everybody can learn. Skills everybody should learn.
Because being a leader is not about giving igniting speeches in front of a large crowd. It’s not about a managerial position. It’s not just about being CEO of a big company.
Being a true leader means being the leader of your own life. Choosing to take ownership of your own life and leading it with courage, determination and focus.
Leadership is about showing up for yourself day in and day out, without letting outside circumstances dictate how your life unfolds.
Let me say that again: without letting outside circumstances dictate how your life unfolds.
You are not some leaf on a tree that dances to the wind’s will.
You have a mission in life (you may not know what that is yet, but we’ll get to that later. I promise.) You have goals to achieve, dreams to reach and most importantly, a gorgeous life to live.
Without taking ownership of your life, without being the leader of your own life, you are letting others (people, circumstances, etc.) take your driver seat.
And the world needs you in your own seat!
So how do you get back in your own seat? You learn to be a leader and you begin with these 3 skills: ownership, proactivity and mapping.
I know that last one sounds strange but bare with me.
If you want to lead your life, you first have to own up to it. Meaning that you have to come face to face with the brutal reality that whatever situation you are in IS your current situation. No rainbow or unicorns here (not yet!) This doesn’t mean that this is your forever situation. It simply means that it’s your current reality.
Refusing to acknowledge what state your life is currently in, will simply delay you from regaining your power.
If you’re in debt, acknowledge that. Sit down and look at the numbers. Really look at the numbers and understand what they mean. Don’t hide behind multiple credit cards and loans and whatnot. Take a hard look at your finances and own the fact that you are in debt. Will that hurt? Yes, it most probably will. But that’s part of the process. Hurting is not a bad thing. It’s a signal that it’s time for you to move on to bigger and better things.
Acknowledging where you are starting from is your best starting point and your greatest chance at success.
If you’re in a difficult relationship, acknowledge it. Don’t try to cover it up by giving yourself or the other person excuses. Don’t sugar coat it by finding the “good moments” in the relationship. Simply state the fact that your relationship is currently struggling or that you’ve hit a rough spot.
Notice I didn’t say “give up” or “move on” or “remove yourself from”.
Ownership is not about brushing things aside. It’s about willingly and courageously opening your eyes to what’s in front of you, so you address it and move on.
So whatever situation you are currently sitting in. Acknowledge it. Recognize it. Call it by name. Write it down.
It’s your first step towards being a leader.
In the next two blog posts, we’ll take a look at the other two crucial leadership skills everyone should learn.
As you’ll notice, the skills build on each other. Like an ecosystem.
Ownership is the first element on which proactivity grows on which mapping expands. They are all connected and they all work in synchronicity.
Getting you started…
You may be wondering how to identify the big, and small, pieces of your life.
Here’s a routine you can implement that will help you sort out the necessary stuff from the fluff. This will only take 5 minutes and you can practice it daily.
Find a comfortable spot to sit and close your eyes. Keep your back erect, your neck aligned with your spine, your chin slightly tucked in and your eyes soft.
Take 5 deep breaths in through the nose and out through the mouth.
Feel the air coming in and out of your lungs.
Then allow your breathing to go back to normal.
Repeat the following mantra 5 times slowly in your head then 5 times out loud (if you can’t say it out loud for whatever reason, repeat it another 5 times in your head).
“I accept and acknowledge my reality for what it is.
I accept it with love.”
Once you’ve repeated the mantra, allow it to sink in.
Then take out a piece of paper, or your journal, and a pen and start writing.
Allow the thoughts to flow freely and your hand to write without your head interfering.
With practice, your reality will become apparent to you.
As always, I love hearing from you so once you’ve done this practice or identified your reality, drop me a line in the comment section or send me and email HERE.