To lead and inspire the best in others we must first lead and trust the best in ourselves. That means ‘getting naked’.
It also means being human, permitting vulnerability and being prepared to say ‘I don’t know…’
The thing is, the workplace can feel a very unsafe place to do that in!
So often, we need to be wary, defend our views and protect ourselves from the criticism, abuse, stress and pressures that are all around us.
We have to stay on top of the demands of our careers, the responsibilities, the long work hours, the crazy deadlines, the difficult relationships because if we don’t we risk losing everything – salary, security, status, credibility…
Surely, we absolutely have to protect ourselves?
The irony is, the very things we perceive as protecting us, are in fact destroying us and holding in place the toxic attack/defense mechanism that so typifies the workplace.
The challenge for conscious leaders is to step out from behind that protective barrier.
Conscious leaders let go of fear, preconceived ideas and arrogance. They refuse to play the toxic work game of pretense, hypocrisy, authority and leadership ‘posturing’. They look within. They learn that they are ‘enough’. They learn to trust themselves.
Conscious leaders allow themselves to stand naked and vulnerable and, in so doing, they become their best. That’s when they become an inspiration to others, and that’s when transformational change becomes possible.
To quote the wisdom of Lao Tzu… ‘When you are content to be simply yourself… everybody will respect you’.