Wellness in the 21st Century
This article is about leadership coping tools. Use them as a guide. Adopting these tools in my own life not only brings about healthier dynamics in my personal life and relationships, but helps in volunteer and workplace leadership areas to achieve greater success and happiness.
Adopting a leadership style can be done in ways both healthy and unhealthy. Indeed, even successful leadership can be improved by embracing healthier coping skills. To create a thriving life and workplace, motivational tools must also be healthy.
In this section, I describe “driven” leadership and personality styles (commonly adopted amongst leadership today) versus a truly motivated (and inspirational) leadership style. What are the differences between “driven” leaders and “inspired” leaders?
“Driven” leadership styles and personality types primary operate within the “Fight or Flight Response.” In contrast, truly motivational leadership and inspired personalities operate in a more balanced way, moving fluidly between the “Relaxation Response” and “Fight or Flight Response” as situations demand. What does this translate into tangibly? Follow along and discover what kind of personality and leadership style you operate under.
Purely Achievement-Oriented & “Success-Driven” Leadership Exhibits Signs Of:
*Self-seeking behavior (primarily operating for self-benefit, adopting the “do-me first” philosophy rather than a group, team or community oriented emphasis for the greater good)
*Neuroticism, working to achieve success at any and all costs (legal or illegal), overlooking human rights issues, worker safety, healthy boundaries, and work-life balance, even making irrational self-sacrifices at the stake of personal and worker health, family and personal obligations
*Adopting an “Ends Justify the Means” attitude to not just “tighten up the belt” but cut corners for short-term benefits, arbitrary milestones and appearances of success (often illegal or morally questionable)
*Fear-based motivation, operating from the standpoint of lack rather than abundance, a doom-and-gloom attitude that deflates others rather than uplifts and encourage those around us
*Aggression or passive-aggressive communication style and behavior, adopting controlling behavior and procedures such as manipulation, embarrassment, humiliation, while shaming, isolating, or alienating others inappropriately
*Lack of mindfulness, does not take into account long-term consequences, thoughts and opinions of others outside a small scope, takes on too much responsibility without delegation
*A lack of ownership for mistakes or poor communication, blaming, covering up mistakes or pinning it on others
*Taking too much credit, not acknowledging vital contributions of others (big or small) that create overall success
*Unhealthy criticism, using overly critical language, overly inflammatory or dramatic, or frames criticism poorly, using blanket phrases like “you ALWAYS do this…” which ensures alienation of the listener
*Focuses too much energy or resources in job justification or gossip
*Inability to connect with staff, picking favorites, building cliques, rather than building bridges
Truly Motivated and Inspired Leadership Styles and Personality Types Demonstrate:
*Effective coping skills for stress such as good self-care, work-life balance, expanding healing modalities for stress
*Utilizes a positive reward system for self and others, such as healthy rewards and activities for project milestones and achievements
*Utilizes mindfulness skills which consider the consequences of actions and feelings of self and others
*Leads by example, keeping a humble, gentle servant’s-heart, removes ego
*Takes ownership for mistakes and behaves honestly and forthright
*Makes amends to others, self and community as appropriate
*Patience with self and others
*Good conflict-resolution and crisis-prevention skills, adopting an intelligence-over-emotion attitude
*A strong value for team-oriented, collaborative thinking
*Seeks to discover talents of self and others, delegating tasks to appropriate individuals
*Celebrates individuality and diversity, conveying a healthy minimum standard of respect and tolerance
*Sets healthy boundaries with self and others
*Sets reasonable goals for self and others
Life-long learning and effective leadership requires plasticity in attitudes and thinking. We must never grow comfortable, stagnant or completely self-satisfied. Adopting healthy coping skills is a daily, life-long process that creates motivational leaders, healthy groups and healthy environments.
Reach out to self-development resources that don’t just focus on achievement-oriented life-skills or conventional appearances and perceptions of success. Instead, seek out motivated communities that inspire lasting, positive change and action! Life and health coaches can be an important resource for inner development. Spiritual and leadership communities that work for healthy personal development and the common good can be instrumental. For example, Toastmasters International remains one of the most encompassing programs available to the public that mentors leaders and also helps members to develop effective communication tools. Don’t just get inspired. Be an inspiration today!