The vital importance of self leadership and being connected to yourself & strategy

(That’s me drytooling at a local crag in WA)

Many people can’t seem to get off the bottom of the rope in a tug-of-war because they haven’t learned how to pull up their own slack yet. 

They haven’t taken the time to understand what it means to lead themselves (“self-leaders”) before they have led others or have been in a position of leadership themselves.

You’ve probably seen leaders like this, you may have been one or are one right now. It took me a long time to really understand what it meant to be a leader. I think in this last post on the Dokkōdō it all comes together for me.

Dokkōdō Principle #21: tsune ni hyoho no michi o hanarezu (常にひょほの道お離れず) English interpretation: Never stray from the way of strategy

It seems to me that the last 20 principles that have been outlined by Musashi is in fact the strategy that he is talking about in this last principle. Never stray from the way of strategy, if we really took that to heart when we look at the rest of the principles in context I look at this as leading the self.

When we first focus on empowering ourselves to connect to our true authentic selves we are able to create our own opportunities and make the changes you want to see in the world. When we are able to do this we are setting examples of what it means to live on purpose and with intention.

Many of us probably grew up in the business world with this idea that our bosses were going to show us how to lead at every level of leadership that we find ourselves in. That seems like a great ideal, but in my experience once you get beyond the basic low level management roles you need to take an active role in your development.

I think we all want someone to lead us but we need to recognize that once we move into a leadership role, other people are now looking at us to help lead them. It creates a situation where you need to constantly be leading and following.

I have found that I have really needed to learn how to lead myself first, learn what I need as an individual and nurture that so that I can show up authentically for my team. When I do this, I am truly leading from who I am and not leading like a carbon copy of someone else.

If you’ve been waiting for someone else to lead you, it’s time to stop. You are the only person who can lead yourself. Tap into your authentic self, discover your ikigai, develop your professional pursuit and pursue that with your whole being.

If you don’t know what that professional pursuit is, it is time to start building it and learning how to design a strategy to see it come true. If you do have one, it is time to execute on the strategy. What are you waiting for?

The world will become a better place when we are all focused on how to make the world a better place. But it starts with us. One by one.

I will leave you with a quote that has stuck with me ever since I read it about 10 years ago, “Change starts with you, but it doesn’t start until you do.” – Tom Ziglar

#ikigai #kokorozashi #authenticself #selfleadership

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