Leadership Training: The Bit They Didn't Tell You About Changing!
A willingness to change first is one of the major pre requisites for leaders!
If the situation is deadlocked or blocked, they need to find the best opportunity, shift their personal perspective to accommodate it and take action from there. This is no matter how personally attached they are to their current position!
Three sixty degree feedback is a great example. The manager/leader is given feedback from their management, peers and reports; expected to take it on board, and integrate the necessary changes to become more effective within the team!
Sometimes the feedback is very concise and confrontive.
The program manual's documentation on how to make change happen is almost non-existent. We are very poorly aware or educated about what to do here. Many leaders are left with a desire to change and no information on what to do to make it happen other than manipulate themselves, this is painful, energetically draining and not sincere.
So how do we do it?
By analogy it is based in energetic principles of physics and chemistry. When we take something that is negative and something that is positive and add them together they neutralize each other and we end up with something else instead.
In our personal lives we can see this in the break down of relationships especially with divorce: the strength of the original attraction becomes the force of the repulsion for the ex partner. If both the attraction and the repulsion were added together they would neutralize each other out and there would be no need for action, anger or pain.
In business, a recent senior client summarized their use of information as either a weapon or a gift. They were insightful, and presumed others were too, about a particular set of circumstances. When the other party seemed to be not getting the 'common sense' of it, they would use their information as a weapon to inflict harm. In their more patient moments, or more equal relationships they used information as a gift, to enable the other person to move forward freely.
Through our work this client took the energy they held for both issues, the weapons and the gifts, and added them together. What surprised them was the sense of the transformation and the moment of profound realization - their "ah ha!" about the difference.
These opposite and equal forces are called polarities. Love and fear are polarities of each other and represent two of the most potent forces for creation or destruction on the planet. We make tremendous efforts to keep them apart from each other to create results and to limit opportunities with our fiercely held unconscious assumptions!
The key here is that we need to work out what we love and what we fear that are equal and opposite forces, we then need to bring their energies together within us and allow them to meld, neutralization will occur and a moment of profound "ah ha!".
You actually already know how to do this unconsciously. It is what actually happens when we are really stuck and it matters. If we really don't know how to make it happen, but 'it' really matters, we often let go of knowing how and allow the outcome to present itself! Our role then is to take advantage of the opportunity! Most of us know how to do this!
Think about times you have run out of ideas, options and actions on what to do yet the outcome or contribution still has your full commitment. What has happened? Write to me and tell me your experiences (email address on web site).
My example is that I have gluten intolerance that has involved much disturbed sleep due to cramping of my digestive tract. When I have eaten well and still have insomnia I have been very intolerant, as my sleep bank is already regularly overdrawn!
I remember once being awake three nights in a row for many hours for no apparent reason. I thought I knew all about how to work with polarities, bringing the energies together and neutralization. On the third night I ran out of ideas about what the poles might be before I got distracted and fell asleep again. I distinctly remember giving up knowing how to do this, but still deeply desiring my sleep. In the morning the last thing I could remember before falling asleep was this thought.
My body is a machine to some extent that 'runs' programs; my job is to choose a useful program! Given it has all the usual associated stimuli, it is dark, it is quiet, everyone else is asleep, then it has the potential to 'run' the sleep program or the insomnia program. Clearly, something unconscious is giving it directions which one to select. In letting go of knowing how, we can enable our innate wisdom to come to the fore and sleep returns.
As part of my personal coaching business, I set homework for clients to integrate their new perspectives and skills into their lives. Information is only useful when it works for them and they can use it to acquire wisdom in their lives.
I am constantly surprised at the tough circumstances in which they choose to 'give it a go'! Areas I would be fainted hearted to suggest, as I know how committed they are to their unconscious assumptions (their love).
What I often fail to concurrently perceive is their constant and deep frustration at being stuck so often at this common point (their fear). Their need to move beyond this barrier of assumption is so profound, that the first opportunity to do so is taken with both hands and ridden to success!
Next time you are really stuck, work out what you love about the situation, it may be the rush from the fear! Work out what you fear about the situation, it maybe that you will never have this level of rush again. Bring the two energies together in you.
If the result is neutralization, you have dealt with a polarity and now practice of the choice is required to reinforce the new 'programming'. If it hasn't shifted then you need to look further for the equal and opposite nature of the two poles.
Change at this level is profound and sustainable. Your choice has been enabled for this issue and you can now deliver modulated behavior rather than only on or off results. For example my client can now be wise about the use of the information, rather than only use it as a carrot or a stick.
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Rosemary Johnston is a professional corporate and personal coach. Working with executives from some of Australia's largest and most successful companies for over 15 years.
Rosemary's new book, "How To Develop Your Leadership Style and Skills to take charge of your life and career" is now available to download at her web site. Read about some of the success Rosemary has had coaching leaders in Australian blue chip companies. http://www.leadershipfirst.com.au
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