“We are not victims of our situation. We are the architects of it.”
― Simon Sinek, Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don't
So often, challenging situations in leadership disguise themselves as uncontrollable external forces. Fortunately, shifting our perspective helps to reveal that they are not uncontrollable at all.
Through observing and processing our emotions, we can take ownership of our response mechanisms and manifest positive results for ourselves and our organization. The combination of mindfulness and use of emotional intelligence go hand-in-hand as a steadfast playbook for overcoming and thriving as an effective leader.
Harnessing Mindfulness & EQ
Mindfulness and emotional intelligence (also known as EQ) are two essential tools that become even more powerful when used together. Leaders who utilize mindfulness and EQ skills can more effectively manage their own emotions, better understand and empathize with the feelings of others, and yes, make smarter decisions, especially in stressful situations
When issues arise, embrace mindfulness first. It’s all about paying attention to the present moment with intention and without judgment. Emotions are crucial indicators of our responses to people and situations. They can also be powerful triggers. When we are mindful, we are deeply aware of our feelings and surroundings, while not letting them define us. We create space between what we feel and how we see ourselves, allowing us to think more clearly and strategically.
Harnessing emotional intelligence, we then respond intentionally to those emotions constructively, effectively, and in life-affirming ways. And it’s not just about feeling our emotions; it’s also about understanding the emotions of others, why they feel the way they do, and using that information to make decisions. So it’s both a cue to our feelings and those of others, giving us precious information to act in ways that lead to the successful results we are seeking. Leaders with high EQ skills better understand the motivations of their team members as well, which leads to more productive and harmonious work cultures.
Effective Leadership Through The Great Resignation
As leaders, we set the tone for the entire organization, and our actions can have a ripple effect on culture as a whole. If we are passionate about our work and committed to excellence, that attitude will be reflected in the rest of the organization. We must demonstrate and model mindfulness and use EQ for our board members, teams, and staff. As we all from the time we are children on, actions really do speak louder than words.
In this moment of the Great Resignation, it is vital to choose and develop healthy cultures where all of us want to work. Now is the time to normalize emotional discussions as normal and healthy to foster an energetic work culture that empowers both the organization and the individuals working in it.
We have all been reminded that life is very precious and fleeting these last few years. Employees have the power to choose their workplace, and rightly so. As organizations, it’s both our professional and moral responsibility to nurture, encourage, and support those who choose to work as professionals, board members, and donors, towards achieving our shared visions and missions.
Bridging the Gap
Becoming a mindful and emotionally intelligent leader is a process that requires consistent practice and self-awareness. Many times, things won’t turn out the way we planned. This calls for assessing what went wrong, adjusting, and finding the best path forward with the new information at the moment. Essentially, we’re using mindfulness and EQ together as excellent tools to create the most successful results possible.
Over the last 30+ years, I’ve helped transform organizational leaders into outstanding motivators and spirited facilitators of healthy organizational cultures. Schedule a consultation with me to achieve success as an effective leader through proven models of practicing mindfulness and EQ.
"As a Jewish educator, I fundamentally believe that people need to feel an alignment of purpose and action to thrive – and thriving individuals build thriving organizations and thriving communities. Working with Rhoda reminded me of what I’m passionate about, what I’m good at, and where I want to grow. Instead of floundering about, I now feel in alignment."
- Alisha Pedowitz- Executive Director, Moving Traditions