Habits of a Positive Leader

To be a positive, strong and influential leader, you have to develop and strengthen a leadership practice that is authentic to you. Whether you’re running your own business or leading teams or projects in the corporate world, your leadership practice is built by consistently honing your skills, gifts, and abilities.

It’s a choice you make day in and day out, regardless of title. And to honor that choice to be the leader you know you’re meant to be will require changes from you.

Such as your habits.

Those little things that we do every day, and many times, on autopilot are important to change. Yet when your habits change, you’ll see the results and they will become your new norm. So, here are five habits for you to evaluate and adjust as appropriate for where you are and where you want to go:

Number 1 - Positive leaders are continually learning

They are looking to expand their knowledge and strengthen their skills. For instance, reading or listening to a few...

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Which Are You? Playing to Win or Playing Not to Lose?

 Although it may seem like semantics, the difference is key. When you play to win, you are willing to push yourself.

You're willing to move completely out of your comfort zone, even if you're nervous. You ask for help and trust your teammates to do their part. You have a “can do” mindset, so you are open to possibilities and solutions. You make decisions based on the belief that you will succeed, not out of fear. 

When you play not to lose, you're timid in your actions, and you're not willing to take some risks.

The fear of failure is taking up too much energy, and you may be inadvertently holding yourself back. Playing not to lose also allows that inner critic to get louder and louder and be more in control than that still knowing on the inside and trusting yourself.

But just think – whatever these big, out of your comfort zone goals are - when you show up as the leader you know you are and you’re playing to win – then when you achieve them,...

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What's the "So What?"

What's the "so what?"

So what does that mean?

When I was in the corporate world, I led many high level visibility projects, including employee recognition events and company trade shows.

And for each of these events, I’d ask what was the “so what?”

To put it another way, if I were to tell my boss or someone who might be expected to attend this event about it, and if they answered “So what – why do I care or want to be there?” I wanted to be able to answer it.

So – what IS the so what?

It’s the why behind the event or project. It’s the reason the event or project is important to do and in some cases, the reason it is appropriate at that time.

It’s the reason why someone wants to be there – not has to because their boss is expecting them to attend. It’s the reason why one project takes priority over another project.

The “so what” answers the question “What’s in it for me?”

It’s...

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Who do you want your clients to become?

Just as much as your clients have an idea or goal they want to achieve or a change they want to make and want your expertise to guide them, you more than likely have an idea of what you want for your clients.

Here are some thoughts that resonated with me when I thought about this for my business and those whom I serve:

I want my clients to know and own their value - be confident in themselves and what they have to offer.

I want for them to be successful business owners and excited to share what they have to offer and embrace their role as the business leader, not just the creative side they love.

My clients are those who are genuinely concerned and care about their people - whether they are team members, clients, family, and friends - and many of them care for animals, too. With that in mind, I want my clients to confidently set and honor boundaries, so that they are decisive and compassionate when they say yes and no.

I want my clients to embrace their discomfort with being...

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How Full is Your Cup?

I wanted to take some time to talk about self-care and remind you to take time….

Oh wait, I mean make time to do things that fill your cup.

When you’re just going, going, going, and feel like your to-do list keeps getting bigger, you can start feeling like you need to do more. To push even harder.

I know I can certainly feel this way.

And that’s the exact time when you need to take a step back, chill, and do something for you.

It seems so counterintuitive to slow down to go fast, but if you’re running on empty, feeling stressed out or anxious, then whatever you're working on or whomever your working with will not get your best efforts. They are getting what’s left, especially those closest to you.

And you feel frustrated, tired, and just exhausted.

It’s hard to give what you don’t have.

You deserve better for yourself, and those around you (family – pets included, friends, team, clients, customers) do. Your business does too.

So if...

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Fully leverage your gifts

What your gifts are – those things that really make you YOU – the more positive impact you can make for your team, organization or business.

And you may not be really clear what they are, but you look at your experiences, why people come to you and for what reason, what lights you up and what feels effortless and time goes so quickly, you’ll see breadcrumbs to help you identify them.

I remember being in the corporate world and working with my VP for a new recognition program. It needed to have a different approach and feel than anything done before. She gave me her vision in a few words, and I took that back and developed the concept, branding, process, and budget for it. When we regrouped, she said – you see the vision, and with a few parameters, create a viable product and deployment plan. That was one of my breadcrumbs.

As you are clear on your gifts and working from them, determine how you can take it a step further and enable your team or clients to do...

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Why CONFIDENCE is so Important to Leadership

To show up as the confident business leader you're meant to be, you need to share your strengths and stay true to your vision and values and that's where confidence kicks in.

The more confidence you have, the more you will:

    • Know what your strengths are and be willing to put yourself out there and share them over and over again
    • Push yourself to desire a big vision and realize you're fully capable of making it happen and with confidence you declare it as yours
    • Trust you can turn that vision into reality by creating an actionable and achievable plan to get there
    • Make decisions that need to be made and execute them, especially difficult ones, without second guessing
    • Know and trust what to say yes to and what to intentionally say no to
    • Communicate effectively what the vision is and work with others to help them know what it is, why it's important and how they fit, so that they are able to buy into the vision because they're buying into you
    • Develop and grow your group from high...
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The One Thing That Will Stop Your Vision in its Tracks

It’s the start of another day and you’re thinking about what needs to happen to turn your vision into a reality.

You check out your plan and the specific tasks for today, and you get started.

You feel like you are making progress and after a while, you decide to take a break.

So, you check out the latest post from one of your favorite go-to resources or listen to a podcast that talks about the latest tips to do A, B and C so that your business or team will be able to do X, Y, and Z.

And they make it sound so easy, like it was nothing for them to figure out what was needed to discover some incredible results.

Or maybe you take a few minutes and scroll through your social media feed to find some inspiration. Yet what you notice are how many likes and shares or comments that post has.

And your recent post has none.

Maybe the first few distractions are welcomed and inspiring, and you are encouraged to keep going on your journey. But slowly they start to get to you.

You feel...

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Engagement Question - Do

Take a few minutes today and answer the following for yourself:

What part of your job or business could you do all day?

There must be one part that you absolutely love and could do all day in an ideal world - what is it?

And as you answer that, take it a step further and answer two more questions for yourself:

Why do you feel that way?

and

How can you get to do more of that activity today?

Now - put it into action and bring more joy into your day. Not only will your team, clients, family and friends be excited to see you doing more of what you love, but you'll feel more energized throughout the day while having peace that you were successful at the end of it.

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Your Leadership Picture

Have you ever heard the saying “a picture’s worth a thousand words?”

It comes from the idea that sometimes a picture can better articulate in one image what would take a lot more words to describe.

A picture conveys a message through the image which allows the receiver to feel what it means to them. They can really see the elements that are there which shape their own perception and emotion of the picture.

So using saying as inspiration, I’m curious… what's the picture of your leadership practice?

You see, the clearer you are in where you want to be, the more likely you’re gonna get there.

Let me talk through how I see this.

Think about where you are right now.

Your current state in your business or organization. Your current assessment of how you're showing up and engaging as a leader.

When you think about where you currently are – how would you describe it?

What does it currently look like?

What does it currently feel like?

Is it ideal...

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