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Can Mindfulness Make You a Better Leader? | Transform & Thrive
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Transform & Thrive / Mindfulness  / Can Mindfulness Make You a Better Leader?
What makes a good leader

Can Mindfulness Make You a Better Leader?

When asked what makes a good leader, most people will include some version of the following characteristics:

  • Focused
  • Cool-headed
  • Self-aware
  • Inspiring

Increasingly organisations and businesses are recognising the value of mindfulness in bringing out these traits amongst their leaders. But why? At its core, mindfulness simply means being present. Paying full attention to the present moment. So how does that translate into effective, successful leadership?

#1 Authenticity

The fast-paced demands of most workplaces leave us little time to consider our true feelings about a situation. A mindful approach however encourages you to recognise and understand your thoughts and emotions. This self-awareness makes it easier to stay true to your values. A decision fueled by passion, purpose and meaning is far more likely to inspire, colleagues and employees, than one made with obscure goals in mind.

#2 Active Choice

How often are decisions made on the basis of ‘that’s how we’ve always done it’, with little thought for the changing realities of a situation. So often, we feel as though we’re not leading at all, but simply allowing autopilot to take control. Mindfulness brings with it a clarity and focus that allows for a more responsive, considered approach, likely to prove far more effective than any auto-response.

#3 Objectivity

Despite our best efforts it’s easy to let our emotions rule; not always the hallmark of successful or productive decision-making. With a mindful awareness of our thoughts and feelings and an understanding of their source, comes the ability to see how they may be colouring your assessment of a situation. Being able to step back in this way allows you to see the whole picture and take a calmer, cool-headed approach to finding a way forward.

#4 Emotional Intelligence

What’s that old saying? ‘No man is an island.’ It’s so true. As a leader, you rely on and communicate with colleagues, stakeholders and employees at all levels. With mindful practice comes an awareness of how you interact with and impact on others around you. This self-awareness is crucial to maintaining the productive working relationships on which your leadership depends.

It’s easy to see the positive impact mindfulness can have on your success as a leader. But it only comes with practice. Mindfulness is a way of being that must be cultivated and actively applied to everyday life.  

Share your thoughts on the impact of mindfulness in the comments below. Or, get in touch to find out how 1-2-1 coaching could help you become more mindful as a leader.

1 Comment

  • SONIA ALLINSON-PENNY

    I couldn’t agree more lucy.

    so many times i see MANAGERS continuing to type on their laptop or ipad whilst conducting an employee meeting. Focusing only on tasks and thinking they are projecting an image of being able to multi-task AND OH SO BUSY (AND THEREFORE IMPORTANT).

    AS HEAD OF TALENT AND DIVERSITY FOR SWISS RE, my bet for showing leadership potential goes TO those who are fully present when interacting with others, regardless of rank. SHORTER MEETINGS THAT ARE AUTHENTIC AND A TRUE EXCHANGE ARE WORTH SO MUCH MORE THAN LONGER MEETINGS THAT ARE MAINLY FOR SHOW. EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE IS NOT HARD TO SPOT IN EVERYDAY INTERACTIONS IF YOU KNOW WHAT YOU ARE LOOKING FOR.

    THANKS FOR A THOUGHTFUL PIECE.

    June 3, 2018 at 4:47 pm

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