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Tag: Leadership Skills

Do you feel stuck? What’s stopping you? Identifying your roadblocks will put you back on the road, getting around or working through them, and moving forward

What’s Stopping You? How to Get Past 12 Common Roadblocks to Success

“Your experience facing and overcoming adversity is actually one of your biggest advantages.” ~ Michelle Obama

All day long, we face roadblocks that stop us, and we automatically refocus and figure out the next step. We’re not even aware that we’re doing it. For example, someone interrupts us, there’s a traffic jam, or a client calls with an unexpected question. We handle it and move on.

But when you’re taking a huge step, one that requires faith in yourself and the stakes are high, a small roadblock may seem insurmountable. It’s natural to get stuck when you have a big dream or something new you want to do. It’s easy to feel something pull you back. It’s predictable that at a certain point, something stops you, mentally, physically, emotionally, or spiritually. Take notice of the discomfort you feel and let that be a signal that there is something you need to work out there..

Now you have two choices.

  1. Back down and live with regrets, wondering, “If I had only…”
  2. Grab the opportunity, take the leap, and feel free, exhilarated and proud of yourself.

So the question is — which way do you want to feel?

What’s stopping you?

When you think about what you want to do at home, at work, in the world, in your community, what’s stopping you? Where are you feeling stuck?

Please take the time to honestly write a physical list of your internal and/or external roadblock(s). To get you started, here are some common roadblocks you might be experiencing: not enough self-confidence, not slender/pretty enough, not fluent enough, not skilled enough, not enough support from spouse/friends/community, not enough funds, not enough time, and not enough knowledge.

Being able to identify your roadblock(s) will put you back on the road to getting around them, working through them, and moving forward.

How to get past what’s stopping you

Please remember that grand gestures aren’t sustainable. Little things every day, your daily rituals, build up and gradually condition your body and mind to make things happen. Your life is a result of your rituals. Ask yourself: How are my rituals for sleeping, eating, exercising, working, cleaning, organizing, shopping, spending, measuring & tracking, and so forth, affecting my ability to achieve my big dream?

Look out for these roadblock rituals that will keep you stuck!

Wishing without acting. Wishing by itself goes nowhere. Be intentional and focus on one small change today. This approach will ease you out of your present habits, as you slowly build sustainable, life-long, supportive rituals.

Procrastination. There will never be the perfect time to get started. Acknowledge your feelings of uncertainty and plunge in!

Disorganization. Time management and clutter control takes work and self-discipline. Try this: At night, write a short list of exactly what you want to do the next day and the steps that will get it done. Review the list when you wake up. At a set time, begin doing them. If you find yourself lured away by something else, bring yourself back and focus. In your journal, note your feelings at the end of the day. Rinse and repeat.

Self-dismissive thinking. All too often we let past rejections dictate our present choices. Letting the opinions of others define you, rather than being true to who you’re capable of being, leaves your power in their hands. Take back your power! Take the next baby step toward the best version of yourself.

Denying responsibility. Everything in your life is NOT your fault, but it is your responsibility. You get to choose how you react to and act upon each event. In the most positive light, assess how you can make the most of the present. (If you’re in a dangerous circumstance, this may mean fleeing.)

Perfectionism. Perfect is not possible. The only “perfect” action is the next one you take. Where it takes you is where you need to be, to learn lessons you need to learn.

Faking it. To be at peace, you must show up as wholly, authentically YOU. Trying to pretend to be someone you’re not, living someone else’s life won’t work. That doesn’t mean settling for where you’re at or not pushing past your discomfort; it means having enough self-knowledge to see your potential and living up to it fully.

Losing your childlike curiosity. Over time, we can get really good at editing and discarding what’s hurtful or not useful. If we’re not careful, our open-mindedness and sense of wonder can go out the window, too. Always being right isn’t the goal in life. Let go of the assumption that you have all the answers. Invite diversity back into your life by listening to and learning from others.

Unrealistic expectations. If you expect life to be easy or that everyone will like and agree with you, you will be disappointed. Struggle brings growth. It’s empowering to find your inner source of strength and rise above. Those wins fuel you for life!

Avoiding all risks.  You can’t control everything and you don’t need to. Learn to embrace feelings of uncertainty as your personal challenge. Will you make mistakes? Yes! There’s nothing wrong with that! How will you feel if you don’t take a risk? That could be your biggest mistake of all.

It’s all about you. Humanity is an interdependent network. To be totally self-centered is to tear a hole in that net. You are part of someone else’s safety net, just as someone is part of yours. Keep your connection with others strong. Be there to help someone past their roadblocks, and there will be someone there to help you past yours. 

Doing nothing is safer. Lack of motivation, laziness, having no direction, fear of failure, biting off more than you can chew, all these things will keep you in the eddies of life. Build a bridge to the life you want, by mindfully assessing where you are and where you want to be. Then make one baby step at a time.

Here’s an exercise to help you free up your energy and move forward.

  • Feel where you feel stuck — where does that stuck place manifest in your body?
  • Place your hands on that area and pull the stuck energy away from you, as though it were a physical thing attached to you.
  • Shake that stuck energy off of your hands. Like a sticky substance that won’t let go, stuck or negative energy can cling to us. The motion of physically sweeping it away helps us to acknowledge it and then shift it. This clears the way for new, renewed, and invigorated energy to settle in its place.

We’re inviting women from around the globe to explore big ideas and out-of-the-box creative solutions. If that appeals to you, please join The Great Circle Community. There is no cost to participate and this article is a sample of the things we’re discussing. We’ll be looking for you inside!

During these very complex times we see the need for a more sophisticated vision and an ability to move forward skillfully. This means to move forward, not only with purpose and drive, but with awareness, especially self-awareness and a big amount of compassion.

Modern Leadership is Like Driving — Constant Scanning is Required

Developing as a leader in this complex time is a complicated adventure!  The old style of leadership was more one dimensional. Today’s modern leadership style demands a more feminine approach that springs from a place of greater self-awareness and being attuned to how your personal actions and reactions affect your community

There’s a better way to drive as a leader…by holding five views.

Think of it like driving an actual car. Doesn’t it make you nervous when you’re in the car with a driver who never scans the road? When driving a car, you look ahead through the window, while keeping an eye on the rear and side-view mirrors. Leaders today need to constantly be scanning as they lead. If not, they’re missing out on vital information that could drastically influence their direction.

In fact, many leaders need to add a new view to an already full field of vision — the ability to look at yourself in the mirror and know how you’re manifesting your presence, seeing yourself as other people see you.  Yes, to grow as a leader and as an individual, is like trying to keep your eyes in all these directions, at the same time!

How many times have you been driving and you arrive at your destination and you can’t remember anything you’ve seen, because you’ve been so preoccupied? Try creating greater self-awareness, while you drive. This skill is easy and will spill over into other areas of life.

  • Intentionally shift the focus onto your body while you’re driving.
  • Feel your sits bone connecting to the seat.
  • Notice the way you’re holding yourself and how you’re gripping on the steering wheel.
  • Keep focused on the road but develop a “dual attention” in order to have a sense of self and the road ahead simultaneously.

How will this exercise benefit your leadership? Try something similar while leading via a Zoom call or having a conversation at home. (When we can once again assemble in groups you can practice this while leading in person):

  • Focus on your breath. Is it full or is it shallow; are you breathing deeply into your gut?
  • Focus on your body. Are your feet firmly planted, helping you feel grounded? Are your shoulders tense or loose? Is your face welcoming and curious or is it pushing people away?
  • Notice how others as individuals are responding to you. Is it with openness or with tension?
  • Notice how the collective team is responding to your presence within the group.

How you hold yourself in your body translates in the experience others have. You can create safety and encourage risk-taking, or you can keep the group from moving forward. Your dual attention, while leading, is critical to the success of the group.

Leading others requires a deep look at oneself. In order to transform our teams, our families, our communities, we must be ready to transform ourselves as well. When something changes, it has a ripple effect, changing everything it touches, whether we like it or not. We need the ability to pivot and change course in order to move through and forward in a healthy and resourceful way. 

So, take a look in the mirror. What do you see? What are your strengths? How do you share those with those around you? Where can you expand your strengths, where can you elevate your voice? How does your reflection change the view ahead, behind, or around you?

All of us create a greater sense of self in relation to other people. We get instant feedback from how people react — do they like or not like what we say, how we say it, how we act, how we are, and so forth. During this time of social isolation, we can lose some of that perspective. Which is why women are joining our Great Circle Community.

These are the kinds of discussions we’re having.  Why not join us! We’re inviting women from around the globe to explore big ideas and out-of-the-box creative solutions. Let’s get inspired and nourished as we feed our leader within. There is no cost to participate and we hold it twice a month. We’ll look for you there!

When you use these five self-leadership skills, you’ll add to holiday happiness and be proud of the way you handle holiday stress and pressure more easily.

5 Self-Leadership Skills to Help You Have a Happier Holiday Season

“Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

The year-end months are hectic, yet we’re so grateful for the holiday season! It lets us reconnect with family and friends. It’s a time for relaxing, reflecting and assessing how we’ve done over the past year. Then we can do course corrections as needed. 

While there’s much joy this time of year, don’t you find that there are also added pressures from crowded stores, roads and airports? Plus there are many more internal pressures, too. Sometimes we get caught up in trying to meet expectations of providing the perfect holiday experience, or being the perfect daughter, sister, wife, and mother. The house has to be just so. The meals must be absolutely delicious. We may find ourselves pushing to perform on a lot less sleep and a lot more stress.

It doesn’t have to be like that! Start planning a strategy now that will make you proud of the way you handle yourself at all times. We’d like to share a few self-leadership suggestions that can help.

 What self-leadership skills will help you have a very happy holiday season?

1. Learn from past years. You know yourself and your emotional buttons. And you know your family dynamics and how they push your buttons. You know it’s coming, so how do you want to respond?

We read a great suggestion on Brenda Bence’s website — if you were to have people describe you at the end of the holiday season, what five, positive, descriptive words would you want them to use? This is a time to be very intentional. For example, if you intend to be calm, peaceful, fun, pleasant and loving, then those are the qualities to daily remember, recite, and practice now and on through the season.

2. Predict difficulties. During the holidays, you’re more likely to let your guard down. You might let someone pressure you to do something you really don’t want to do. It may be that extra glass of wine or a second helping, or getting drawn into an old family squabble. To be forewarned is to be forearmed.

Bump up your practice of mindfulness so you’re highly aware of the messages your body is sending you. Are you feeling pressure in your shoulders and neck or churning in your stomach? Do some deep breathing and stretching, as you consciously release the emotions causing the tension. If that doesn’t do it, go for a walk or just step out of the room for a moment to collect yourself. As Jane Austen so wisely said,

“We have all a better guide in ourselves, if we would attend to it, than any other person can be.”

3. Have more than one plan. Disappointment can cause you to spiral into negative thoughts and feelings. Resilience will help you absorb any disappointments and help you to calmly choose the next best thing to do, without internalizing the change as a slight to you as a person.

4. Schedule time away to rest. It’s not selfish to practice self-care. In fact, it’s the only way to build your resilience so you can bring out your best self under even the most trying times.

5. Avoid the holiday blues. There is a let down at the end of the season. A great way to counteract this is to plan a really empowering activity in the upcoming year. And we have the perfect suggestion. Why not attend our Bring Forth the Leader Within 3rd Annual Retreat? It’s going to be held in beautiful Costa Rica in a setting that will relax and stimulate you to dig deeply and find the way to live differently, love fully, and profoundly impact your community and the world.

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