Stability is a state that humans strive to be in, yet we compromise it with self destructive habits. As a leader, you need to manage this proactively.
Stability and growth… how can they exist together? They can and do when you’re managing them proactively. Think of stability as your foundation. It includes your emotions, your thought process, your values and morals. If you don’t have stability in these foundational areas you have self destructive habits that erode your leadership abilities.
Stability isn’t “easy” but it’s possible and becomes easier as you practice. When you have stability you allow those who work with you to predict your needs, communicate with you more effectively, and identify opportunities for growth.
- Emotional stability. This ties into the next item, your thought process. Emotional stability is your ability to feel your emotions, but choose your reactions and responses. As it matures, you become less emotionally reactive and have a balanced response to situations. Pay attention to those situations that evoke strong emotional responses, like anger, embarrassment, helplessness. Write these down and note when they come up again. Just reflecting on them will allow greater control and a more purposeful response.
- Your thought process. Absorb, reflect, respond. I have clients ask which is better: responding with emotions or with facts (logic). My answer is both, as you can rarely remove emotions from a situation, nor would you want to, and facts need to be included as they are a more objective way to base a decision. Absorb the situation… fully listen, ask questions to better your comprehension. Reflect on this information… what does this mean to you, how does this affect you, what do you want the result to be, how can you achieve that result. Respond with purpose… use the right communication method for the audience.
- Values and morals. Morals are taught, values are within. Morals are societies version of what’s right and wrong (laws, religion, social influence), while values are your innate compass on what you think is right or wrong. Know your values and understand how they align or conflict with your morals. This gives you power in communicating when the two don’t align, and allows you to work through those conflicts with purpose, compassion… and stability.
- Communication. To a great extent, you own how others receive your communication. Considering your intended response, and your audience, you create and express the ideal way to communicate. If you don’t experience the intended response (they didn’t understand you, the responded in the wrong way), change your communication style. Communicate with purpose, clearly for the audience you’re speaking or writing to, with an understanding of what they need to best understand you. Always be open to questions, and keep your emotional responses stable.
- Balance with growth, and risk taking. Growth and risk taking go hand-in-hand, and are critical for both personal and professional success. Open yourself up to taking risks. Reflect on why you’re risk adverse, and manage it by risk management processes. Set goals, both small goals and grand goals, and identify how to accomplish them, steps to take, actions… and risks. Knowing in advance how to manage a risk makes it less destructive. If you’re very risk tolerant, ensure you manage risks to avoid self destructive tendencies. Note patterns that your risk taking has produced less-than-favorable results.
One of my favorite emotion and communication exercises is “The Two Sided Debate”. Practice arguing both sides of an issue. It teaches compassion, empathy, emotional resilience, and communication styles. This can be a mentally draining exercise, but try doing this a few times a week. Consider it psychological stability exercise!
You have the ability to better yourself, your life, your circumstances… start now. Need some coaching? Reach out and schedule a free 15 minute consultation. Many employers pay for wellness and leadership coaching from licensed and certified coaches. Ask your HR department about that today.