Not that long ago, inadvertently, I was involved in a heated debate over power, freedom and the essence of leadership. My opponent, a senior advisor to the Head of a company employing more people than what some counties call their populations, had a very emotional reaction when I mentioned that freedom is a base condition for leadership.
Immediately, Alex (not his real name) gave me an angry speech about power that enslaves leaders, who no longer are FREE to act in accordance with their own will, because if they do, they loose power, control, and sometimes their life almost by default. I certainly respect his opinion and understand where it comes from – centuries of violent world history behind ego-dominated leadership.
I should have been more precise with my terminology, because freedom is the base for Transformational or Authentic leadership, not what is been historically called ‘leadership’.
So, where does that freedom come from? and Is it given or taken?
It comes from within, easily claimed, at your fingertips and based in three powers:
- Conscious awareness
- Being at choice
- Responsibility for the outcomes of your decisions
Conscious awareness – knowing what you do and more importantly why you are doing something. It is easier to experience than intellectually comprehend, so here’s my coach request to you:
- Tomorrow, when you wake up take inventory of your day in 15 min. increments. What are you doing? Write it down. No judgment, no explanation, just name the activity.
- The following day, look at your list. Next to each activity write down the reason and desired outcome for each one. Don’t try to make thing up if you don’t know, just write, ‘I don’t know.’
- Ask yourself, ‘What makes me do something if I don’t know the reason behind my actions?’ and ‘What will I get as a result of doing X if I don’t know my desired outcome(what I want as a result)?’
- Ask yourself, ‘Who benefits from me doing X?’
- Ask yourself, ‘What would I do differently when doing X to get the result that I want?’
- Don’t try to do this analysis for your entire day in one sitting. Be kind to yourself. Even if you chose to analyze just one activity with this level of detail, you will be able to develop a valuable skill that you can apply to all your actions and behaviors later and build a success habit of conscious awareness.
Next time we will look at the power of ‘being at choice’, till then, I’d be delighted to hear what you’ve discovered in this exploration and what you’ve committed to changing in your day or perhaps, life.
This entry is a collaboration of Ollga Belova
Ollga Belova is founder of www.DoctorBelovaGroup.com, a company devoted to teaching women around the world how to be in charge of their career AND keep meaningful relationships intact by developing qualities and habits of a transformational leader.
Through her workshops, courses, and coaching programs Ollga shows her students how to manifest their desired outcomes – tangible, sustainable results in all their projects, maintain healthy life balance, experience a sense of freedom, and live their life purpose without personal sacrifices.
Ollga is the author of Transformational Leadership Express System™ — a step-by-step project management process that takes you from a vision to an action plan designed to manifest your transformative visions.
She holds a Doctor of Psychology degree from the California School of Professional Psychology, MBA from the University of Oxford, has Coaching and Emotional Intelligence Coaching Certifications from the Coach Training Alliance and the Institute of Social-Emotional Intelligence.