We can certainly all attest to witnessing constant change that seems to have heightened in these past few years. Our guest blog writer, Christine Freeland, Founder of Sirius Leadership – Guiding Star for Harmony at Work consults and helps businesses, leaders, and organizations align with their creative purpose. She shares insights to the changes the leadership of today and our future must face. Guiding us from old paradigms to emerging consciousness shifts that are serving and connecting us all the more in our workplaces. Christine offers us a look through fresh eyes that we may gain greater perspectives and become more empowered.
Light or Dark
Night or Day
Good or Bad
Fast or Slow
Right or Wrong
Our mechanistic society and work cultures have put limits and imposed a simplistic and inaccurate duality upon us.
Never is something completely one way in a natural/quantum world of constant change.
All we need to do is look a bit longer and deeper at natures examples. It’s time.
Does the sun set immediately, and “WHAM” there is darkness?
Does the sun rise and “ZING” there is Light?
Do you like onomatopoeia? (Please, don’t answer – who uses that word anymore? I had to look it up.)
Anyway, what you do see is a gradual shift of light in both instances, with many stages in between.
Lightness and darkness, each with their own beauty, gradually emerging into the liminal space of dusk, continuously changing, and emerging into new qualities, shades, and colors of light and dark.
What interplay do the clouds have with sun light during the day? What do the moon and stars create with with light at night? Not at all static, is it? Never either this way or that way. There needs to be room for both, and more.
The Natural world that we are part of, when we take the time to connect, is fluid in form, dynamic, constantly adapting to continuously changing needs in the planetary and beyond, ecosystem.
How can we become like this as Leaders in an Organizational Ecosystem or Community?
By developing ways of leading and responding by sensing into current and emerging conditions. Where is more attention needed? Where are systems driving and creating extra work for employees instead of supporting them to do their work? Where are leaders creating conflict by using old mechanistic approaches they have learned from their mentors, when what their employees need is to feel belonging, valued, and supported?
Interviews with the majority of current leaders show that they know change is badly needed to bring us into the future, and they don’t know how to do this. They lack the skills and mindsets needed to frame the true realities of life. No one has taught them how to lead by supporting others, creating autonomy, distributed leadership, self-directed workgroups. Oh, and this big one – dealing with emotions. Theirs and others. This, in my opinion is what really scares the heck out of leaders.
Why? In this mechanistic, dualistic leadership styles, they have been taught “emotions have no place in the workplace”. “Showing emotions makes you look weak”. Sensitivity, compassion, nurturing others has no place, because “the cream rises to the top.” Actually, the “cream” in many cases is great at self-promotion and domination, resulting from excessive ego focus. Then there is the unspoken rule that you have to look and act “in charge”. In that case anger is ok because it’s a dominating response used to instill fear in workers or those with differing opinions. I have in the past, unwittingly used this one. I still feel badly about those moments. Making the people you supervise feel afraid of making you mad, is wrong on many levels.
So, I get it. Why it’s so hard to shift.
This old paradigm leader always has to be “right” which means you have to make everyone else “wrong”. Not a recipe for creating good relationships.
Yep. I did that one too.
The solution is for the leader to be willing to dive inward and learn about themselves first. That takes courage, patience, and willingness to be open to other possibilities. There is A LOT of fear of this self-reflection.
The reality is, the more you learn about yourself, your inner being, sans ego, the more you will be able to lead and uplift, and support, and value others. It also creates true self-fulfillment. When you hear about some CEO or Executive who feels empty after a “successful” career, they lack inner self-awareness and fulfillment. The path of acquiring more, outcompeting everyone, results in a hollow soul or spirit. This is why many in their 50’s or 60’s find themselves reaching out to discover who they truly are, ditch the successful CEO job full of stress and hyper-competition and opting for the inner work. This also happens many times when some type of trauma or tragedy happens to someone and they begin to question their perceptions of life.
It’s time to learn a different way, in order to have a different result.
A willingness to change the lens that you view the world, your organization and yourself.
And a willingness to be wrong, right, sort ’a right and sort ’a wrong.
A willingness to see night and day, light and dark, as they interplay together, constantly changing and evolving into new needs and a willingness to sense into the great possibilities and connections that we have become separated from.
Reconnect and everyone shines.