Emotional skills are necessary for a leader, much as analytical skills. After all, the loyalty, trust, passion, etc., that you want to evoke in your people are all emotions. So, it is implied that emotional intelligence is a leadership skill that one must master.
The wrong emotions, though, waste much energy & lead to wrong decisions. They have a cataclysmic effect on other people too, at work & home. If you are not conscious, it could lead to undesirable results.
“The leader has to recognize when emotions like frustration, impatience, anger, lack of self-confidence, jealousy, greed start to influence his thought processes” – Dalai Lama & van den Muyzenberg, The Leader’s Way.
Take Control Of Your Emotions Before They Control You
This is how you can prevent your emotions from taking over your rationality:
Observe & acknowledge emotions & their triggers as they arise. Over time, it becomes easier to spot them.
Once you spot them, give yourself space between the trigger & your reaction. You have a choice here, which is very powerful.
Here’s an example:
If a particular scenario is upsetting, instead of immediately expressing displeasure, take a few moments, breathe consciously. This calms the breath, the mind & the surge of emotions.
Choose words, if needed, carefully so that what you express through words & body language isn’t aggressive but constructive & respectful.
Emotional Intelligence is Not A Weakness
Being in touch with your emotions is not a weakness; it’s wise, especially if you’re a leader.
Yes, I know it’s easier said than done— I am with you on that. But once you figure out your ability to separate your emotions from your thought processes, you have conquered your true weakness. You will find clarity in situations and rational solutions when faced with challenges.
Find Your Clarity
As with everything in life worth doing, each effort counts. Here’s my mantra:
Pick yourself up if you go off the rails; keep going.
Schedule a conversation with me today. Let’s talk about how you can leverage your emotional intelligence to develop yourself into the whole spectrum of leadership capabilities— strategically, psychologically & spiritually.
In multiple conversations I’ve had this week, I see clients wanting to reflect on what’s working & what’s not in their lives, on what’s important, and what gives them some “me-time.” It proves just how important it is to adopt mindfulness practices, especially for working individuals who handle constant stress in the workplace. It could be meditation, journaling, walks & other healthy habits. It’s all about finding what works for you.
Meditation has many wonderful benefits for stress management. We know just how stressful it can be at the workplace. Thus, finding a mindfulness practice that you can be consistent in is crucial for performance and productivity. You’d be surprised by the impact it can bring to you!
Not only does meditation help you build resilience over time, but it is an effective tool for relaxing your body and mind. You can do it anytime and anywhere when you need it.
But despite the best intentions, I still see people struggle with adopting and being consistent with their mindfulness practice. The most well-laid plans go astray. Life gets in the way. Fortunately, just like most things in life, practice makes perfect. Try to be consistent with your mindfulness practice, implement it regularly, especially on times when you most need it. Here are my 3 tips on how you can develop and maintain the mindfulness practice of your choice:
1. Start small when building a habit.
For example, start with 5 mins of meditation. It’s easier to incorporate into busy schedules. Build it up over time.
2. Get back on the wagon.
If you lose touch with your practice for a few days or weeks, just get back without a guilt-trip or without telling yourself that “I can’t keep a habit.”
3. Don’t let doubts shake your resolve.
Even seasoned meditators aren’t able to keep thoughts away while meditating. Over time, the ability to realize that one has drifted away and return to the focal point/breath increases. So don’t give up just because you can’t keep thoughts away.
Got questions? Schedule a conversation with me today, and let’s discuss how you can develop yourself into the whole spectrum of leadership capabilities— strategically, psychologically & spiritually.
Leadership during a crisis can be challenging. Boxing could be a more apt metaphor. You never know which side the next blow is coming from, and the opponent never tires!
With the unprecedented events and changes taking place almost simultaneously, managing all of these is the Ironman test of leadership.
Mistakes are inevitable, but we must not think that failures of leadership are the only thing that can come out of this situation. There are many opportunities for decisive action and honest communication that comes with it. If you can rise to the occasion, you will establish your core values as a leader.
3 Tips to Survive and Thrive
I’ve talked to leaders who have been praised for what they’ve done for their people. And this is what I’ve gathered on how you too can survive and thrive as a leader during a crisis:
Ann, a CIO with a rather transactional style of communication, rose to the need of the hour, putting people & touching base with them first. She trained to stretch outside her comfort zone, shares helpful info & goes beyond just asking for status updates.
Sunil, a VP in a Pharma company, keeps people in the loop with updates & snubs the grapevine talk, letting them know he’s open for questions.
Michelle, VP-Ops in a leading consumer goods co., cannot stress enough the importance of taking a step back from the chaos. When she’s not in the middle of it all, her mind gains the calm & clarity for solutions to emerge. It’s self-care and other-care at its best.
I believe that a crisis poses an opportunity to rediscover your core values. And this COVID crisis has been extraordinarily challenging. It’s an opportunity to find clarity and help you develop unshakeable confidence to overcome any future scenario.
Do you acknowledge that there is a great opportunity for you to discover your personal power in these trying times? Leverage the situation to develop yourself into the whole spectrum of leadership capabilities: strategically, psychologically & spiritually. Schedule a coaching session with me today and find out how.
We all want a life of balance. In the daily rush of things, we however lose focus on reflecting on that. How does one even start reflecting on how to have a balanced life?
I have just the right thing for you.
The Wheel of Life (WoL) is a great exercise and tool for helping you create more balance and success in your life. It is often used in coaching and is a great foundational exercise for goal-setting.
As in the image below, you can see that the Wheel of Life is split into different life areas: Career(/Business), Money (financial health), Health (physical, mental & spiritual health), Friends & Family, Significant other (romantic partner), Personal growth (one’s level of self-awareness and growth), Fun & leisure (time spent enjoying hobbies, me-time, family time, etc.).
On each of these areas, rate and record your current satisfaction levels out of 10, where 1 is closest to the centre of the circle and 10 is at the edge of the circle. Use the first number that pops into your head, not the number you think it should be.
With that, you’ll be able to reflect and gain insights into how satisfied you are in life’s different areas. With this workbook, you can further delve into appreciating the areas that are already wholesome, those that you’d like to improve on, and the steps you’re inspired to take.
Below you can see an example on the right and a blank template right next to it. Whenever you’re ready, you can start the exercise and then move on to the questions below.
Reflections: Here are some great questions to think about:
- Are there any surprises for you?
- Which of these categories would you most like to improve?
- What steps are you inspired to take to bring that life area into balance?
- What steps are you inspired to take to bring the whole WoL into balance?
- How could you make space for these changes in your life?
I’m eager to hear from you. How did you like this exercise? What insights did you gain? Please share in the comments.