2.6 Leading into 2006
EGL Newsletter Volume 2.6
We stand facing into new opportunity.
2005 has nearly reached its completion. The Winter Solstice has just passed, and each day is successively longer for the next 6 months. The steady lengthening of the day is emblematic of the building energy of the coming year. 2006 beckons on the other side of the holidays. The world around us pauses to shift its focus to celebration, rest, and togetherness.
To some, this shift in energy at year end can feel like a void. Business slows down and in many cases comes to a complete stop. Many unfinished items get put aside until the new year. This can be the space within a breath for leaders, a time to prepare for the coming year. So, here are a few things for each of us to think about as we prepare to lead into 2006.
Take time to reflect on the positives of the past year. For whatever reason, for many of us, the positive accomplishments of the year tend to vanish behind the problems or things that didn’t go as well as we had hoped. The art of leadership requires a practice of going into our past and making sure our positive accomplishments show up like they are on the big screen. Find the positives, talk to others about them, write a song about them, or create a collage on your refrigerator. Leaders are able to immediately go into the past and find inspirational examples of success to use for themselves and for others. Make sure yours are mentally indexed, in technicolor, and with full surround sound. Then, put them on play and sit back and enjoy the show.
Celebrate your accomplishments. Next, after you have the fully evolved picture of your accomplishments, go out and celebrate them. Make sure your celebration is in keeping with the fullness of your successes. Make it big, active, and vibrant. You worked hard, you deserve it. Now, as a bonus, think about who has made this possible for you. Maybe it is your business partner, your office manager, or your spouse. Whomever it is, they deserve a good fling as well. Take them with you, tell them how much you appreciate them, and make sure that know just how important they are to you. Leaders don’t lead long unless they maintain their following.
Put things into perspective. Okay. Work, career, and business are all great. They enable us to do some really wonderful things. Years ago my dear friend Chuck took me to dinner at a beautiful little restaurant in California. We talked business, practice, and theory for a while. He stopped and looked around the room, then said something that has obviously stuck with me for a long time. He said “Remember, the only reason we do any of this work is so that we can do what we are doing now …. sit around the table in a great place and have wonderful conversations.” He was (and is) so right. All of this work is to create a better place for us to be as human beings. Remember that all work is more powerful when it serves a higher calling. The most effective leaders keep their sights on a larger aspiration and ensure that everything they do is in line with that.
Select the tone you want to live for the next year. I have recently started to think in terms of the overall tone of a moment. It includes what is happening, the physical events, as well as the feeling of the event. All together, this creates a vibration that we perceive as the overall tone of the moment. I use the events in the past, fully evolved in technicolor, to understand that tone. I then get choiceful about which tones I want for the future and start living in it. You can put it on like a suit of clothes. Leaders develop this to a fine art. It is larger than trying to act something out, it is pulling that feeling into your cells and into the fiber of your being. Find it, feel it, and live it. Your year will be profoundly impacted by this act of personal leadership.
Be in the moment during this time. Lastly, take the opportunity to enjoy this beautiful time. In years past, I have spent this time in a frenzy to finish the last year and get ready for the next. Later on, I have looked back and wondered what happened to the holidays. This is a profoundly connected and spiritual time of the year. Live in the moment, enjoy it, and love it. This is the ultimate leadership lesson ever. Be your higher self, create a space for a glorious future, and be available for others during this time.
Make 2006 your best ever. My challenge to all of us who choose to lead is simple. Learn to live the steps above. Understand your past and learn from it. Choice your future and create it. Live in the moment fully, being fully available for all of those who choose to follow. These simple steps can serve to make the coming year the best ever, not only for you, but for all those whom you influence.
For now, I wish you all a 2006 filled with love, light, and great adventure.