Welcome back to my weekly leadership insights. I hope the start of the year has been a good one for you.
For this week’s insights, I want to share an image that really stopped me in my tracks.
Imagine the world if the artists, trailblazers, activists, visionaries, leaders, and change agents – people who have contributed so much to our world, to life, to progress, to upholding possibility – had dimmed their light to fit in, or curtailed their mastery to appeal to the existing views?
It almost doesn’t bare thinking about – what would have been lost. And yet we do this – we diminish the difference we are here to make.
Too often we shape our presence and action based on commentary – from others – or from the voice in our head that keeps us small and in our lane.
It shows up through
- Constantly asking for advice – even though there is clarity deep within you.
- Always taking on others ‘feedback’ – even when it’s conflicting and lacking self-awareness.
- Continually seeking permission – even though you are clear on what needs to be done.
- Hobbling your ideas and inspiration – even though you are charting a new course that defies prevailing expectations.
- Keeping your head down and focusing on the minutiae – even though what’s required is your leadership and ownership of the whole.
- Saying and doing things you don’t agree with – even though it silences your voice, blunts your values, and compresses your heart.
We do it to avoid criticism, to keep us off the hook (‘they’ told me to do it), to belong, and because it keeps us small and safe.
But the cost!
I coach and work with lots of great people who diminish their scope and potential for brilliant, incisive, necessary and inspiring impact because they refer too much to what others think or say.
If this is you right now, mute the criticism. Tune into what is really true for you. Tap into your vision – who you want to be – and take action from there.
And as always, mindsets hold the key. They are the lens through which we view the world and ourselves in relation to it.
Go be a Leonardo!
Till next week