~ Integrative Leadership by Design

A Lifestyle Leadership blog….

dandelion1with words

Previously, in the series on 4 Levels of Human Development, we’ve explored Part 1: Know Yourself and Part 2: Choose Yourself.

In Part 3 of the series, we’re going to explore
Level 3: “Create Yourself”

Olympic athletes hire coaches.  Professional teams hire coaches. Fortune 500 executives hire coaches.

Getting better in what I do in a day resonates and it just felt like time to raise my own bar as a Coach.  The study of neuroscience, consciousness and transformational change in service to coaching relationships is where much of my energy is currently being focused.  Aligning with a Coach and exploring this arena has been like an injection of purpose and energy all at once.  I have to say, completing my intake document setting the platform for our coaching relationship was a rather surreal experience.  To see it all in black and white as it were, kind of set me back on my keester, not to mention how honoring and humbling it was.  As we’ve been working through some initial exercises together, I’m having a re-embracing of the profound benefits that coaching during change can bring to us.

Hitting the reset button on self can be described as exhilarating, fun, energizing, courageous and downright terrifying all at once.  Crossing those places of familiarity and stepping forward into the unknown or perhaps just something different presents us with a kaleidoscope of emotions.   Growth always occurs out of our comfort zone and finding a way to strengthen your relationship with uncertainty will be your ally as you continue to traverse change.

Jeffrey Gaines has given us a fantastic song inspiring us to source the hero within ourselves while embracing one’s heavy lifting.  Have a listen to “Hero In Me”

Let’s discuss what it means to “Walk Your Talk”.

QBQ book coverSometimes we know exactly what needs to happen or what we need to do to create what we envision.  Other times, not so much. There are a myriad of books in this arena and one that I adore leaning on is “QBQ: The Question Behind the Question” by John Miller.  What is so perfect about QBQ is that it helps harness that enthusiasm and assist the reader in narrowing their focus while remaining curious to what they are creating.

Transforming from our current reality of what is and who we are to our next version of self and reality can at times be overwhelming.  Often times enthusiasm is very high at this level and the energy can sometimes show up as scattered and frenzied.  A few of the key opportunities of note at this level of development reside in the places of purpose, perseverance and passion.  Being intentional and accountable to self with what you want to create requires focus.  Some questions you may ask yourself or perhaps journal on might be….

  • How can I bring value?
  • What do I need to do be intentional?
  • Who am I being?

Stay tuned for Part 4 of The 4 Levels of Human Development: “Share Yourself”.  In the meantime if you’d like to connect for a more in depth conversation, give me a call or email me and we can talk about designing a lifestyle and leadership coaching relationship that is unique for you and/or your team. I would love to hear from you!

What is needed here now?

Gisele
919-809-6902
Email me

Aligning….
Purpose – Perseverance – Passion

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A Lifestyle Leadership blog…

leaping for joy with words

In the first post of the series on 4 Levels of Human Development we explored  Know Yourself.

In Part 2  of the series, we’re going to explore
Level 2:   “Choose Yourself”

Thinking

Don’t you just love this cartoon? I mean really, who doesn’t ever feel like this? Options and possibilities all vying for your attention or perhaps it’s all the busyness that you surround yourself with…. Shiny object syndrome to the max – oh the noise!!! If only someone could just tell you what to do and then you could just do that. Problem with this is that the motivation isn’t from the heart, it’s not intrinsic and the chances of you following it through are slim. Choices find us exploring level 2 on our journey of human development and transformation.

On Mother’s Day a few years ago, my daughter Taryn presented me with what has become a profound gift. It was a T-shirt that simply stated, “Live inspired” across the front. Over the years I’ve come to realize that this energy is twofold, be inspired and you’ll inspire others. This is Leadership with Influence!

Get curious and explore what this stage of development looks like for you. If your mind feels anything like the cartoon character’s mind, then you may choose to get some clarity by asking yourself some of the following questions:

  • What is the experience I want from life?
  • What do I want to achieve?
  • Who am I becoming?

Inspire yourself and create your masterpiece….

Inspiration and accountability are forever entwined. When these two states of being/achieving connect, leadership of high influence and the ability to focus on the needs, wants, desires and values of others results.  Who doesn’t want this for self and for everyone in their organization not to mention as part of a shift in cultural effectiveness? What’s underneath Inspiration and Accountability and how do we create the conditions where fostering this ripples through our organizational culture?

Let’s look at this in more depth from the perspective of neuroscience. Our brain is divided into 4 quadrants within the right and left hemispheres. For the purposes of this post, we’ll focus on the upper right and left quadrants.  The right brain is where we open up our thinking to what is possible and to the opportunities around us; Inspiration. The left brain organizes our thinking giving us the focus to implement the tasks necessary to reach our goals; Accountability.  Integration of these 2 hemispheres is what I like to call the sweet spot in neuroscience.  This is the zone often referred to as FLOW; when we are intentional to creating and living our masterpiece from a higher source of inspiration and accountability combined.Outstanding

John Miller’s “Outstanding; 47 Ways to Make Your Organization Exceptional” is a book that comes to mind as a group read when creating the inspirational conditions referenced above. “You will never live life beyond your wildest expectations until you first have some wild expectations.”

Stay tuned for The 4 Levels of Human Development – Part 3, “Create Yourself” where we’ll explore Accountability in more detail.  In the meantime if you’d like to connect for a more in depth conversation, give me a call or email me and we can talk about designing a lifestyle and leadership coaching relationship that is unique for you and/or your team. I would love to hear from you!

What is needed here now?

Gisele
919-809-6902
Email me

Aligning….
Purpose – Perseverance – Passion

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A Lifestyle-Leadership blog….

Reflective person

Leadership Effectiveness begins with you! Assessing self and consciously choosing who you want to be in your business and personal relationships is foundational to personal mastery.  Great Leaders challenge themselves regularly, taking their own temperature on self awareness.  They listen, look in the mirror, get curious and course correct when needed.

Inspire yourself and be the inspiration and mirror for others around you to rise up and be their best selves every day.

In this first of four posts on the 4 Levels of Human Development, I’d like to highlight the 4 levels up front that we’ll be exploring together.

Share Yourself
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Create Yourself
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Choose Yourself
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Know Yourself

Let’s get started!

Level 1 – Know Yourself:

Knowing self and the connection to human spirit.  Our lifelong journey of self-development can find us circling back and reflecting on who we are being at various times in our lives.  Are you looking to be inspired or to inspire others?  Check in with yourself and be the change you want to see in the world.  As you learn, grow and change, some questions you might find yourself asking at this level might be…

  • Who am I?
  • What is my current reality?
  • What do I want?
  • Is there something missing?

A colleague recently asked me what the most influential book was that I read in 2012.  Being an avid reader I hesitated to quickly give an answer, as I wanted to give all books read a moment of reflection.  Such a simple question got me to thinking about WHY I’m choosing what I’m choosing.  After all, the most influential book over an entire year – I’d better have a compelling reason for my choice, right?  Well, as it happens, I do.

Gifts of Imperfection book coverTaking a true assessment of self and challenging self-limiting beliefs head on is not easy!  Every transformation begins with know yourself.   “Gifts of Imperfection” by Brene Brown is a jewel in this arena.  Brene speaks to the heart of accepting ourselves for all of our perceived flaws as well as our places of greatness with a writing style that welcomes the reader to a journey of awareness, acceptance and self-love.

In this world acclaimed TedX video, Brene speaks to one of the most precious gifts to come from her research on Shame: Vulnerability.

The hierarchy of human development gives us a clear path to set intentions and mindfully explore what is needed here now.  While allowing yourself to be vulnerable as you stretch and strengthen your uncertainty muscle, the path for transformation begins.  Sometimes we just “let go” of what is not working in our lives and other times “letting it be” resonates.  Either way, getting out of a stuck place often begins with looking in the mirror of self-awareness and “Gifts of Imperfection” has proven time and again to be a wholehearted and resonant mirror for this exploration.

Stay tuned for The 4 Levels of Human Development – Part 2 where we’ll explore “Choose Yourself” in more detail.  In the meantime if you’d like to connect for a more in depth conversation, give me a call or email me and we can talk about designing a lifestyle and leadership coaching relationship that is unique for you. I would love to hear from you!

What is needed here now?

Gisele
919-809-6902
Email me

Aligning….
Purpose – Perseverance – Passion

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Living in the Tropics; life and leadership lessons explored

Happy New Year Everyone!

“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” – Henry David Thoreau

I just love this quote!!!

Two years ago at this time, Mike and I were in the midst of making a life altering decision. Do we stay in Vancouver, B.C. and continue to live the life we have known or do we liquidate and uproot ourselves embracing a whole new culture and lifestyle that we know nothing about? We chose the latter and are embracing the incredible tropical paradise of Bermuda, as home. We learned very quickly that it’s not all sunshine, clear aqua water and palm trees. Life happens with or without those little umbrellas in our drinks. 😉

I’ve come to believe that everything in life has its compromises. Along with the obvious benefits of living and working in the tropics, our new lifestyle has posed a certain amount of discomfort and adversity for both of us to traverse individually and together. Noticing that it’s often in these darker places when we find ourselves sourcing courage and taking risks, challenging self limiting beliefs, failing, being resilient, succeeding and resetting our paths to name a few of the mini journeys.  The Integration Process is re-visited regularly and checking in with Perspectives continue to be a gift.

A new year is upon us presenting an opportunity for a fresh start. Hopes and dreams, goals and objectives, expectations and accountabilities; call it what you want, for me, it presents an endless kaleidoscope of possibilities to create and design a resonant life in full color. Nigel Marsh’s TEDx video “How to make work life balance work” is a great place for getting curious and maybe a bit uncomfortable while setting some intentions for your next magical experience. Check it out here:

“If you don’t design your life, someone else will do it for you.” — Nigel Marsh

December has been an introspective month for many of the clients and coachees I’m aligned with. As we reflected on experiences from the past year, we held a space for exploration. Owning ones journey and lessons learned speaks to being a leader in ones life; it’s where humility lives and in turn raises your level of consciousness as a leader.  Use this energy and time of year as your personal launchpad to design your magical experience of “what’s next.”

Great Leaders Grow Designing your life sound a bit overwhelming? Perhaps starting with the 3 questions posed by Ken Blanchard and Mark Miller in their book “Great Leaders GROW; Becoming a Leader for Life” may resonate:
         –  What will you keep doing?
         –  What will you stop doing?
         –  What will you start doing?

My greatest wish is that we all consciously choose to set the boundaries by which we view success and design and create our personal visions of what a life well lived looks like.

For a more in depth conversation, give me a call or email me and we can talk about designing a lifestyle and leadership coaching relationship that is unique for you. I would love to hear from you.

Peace….

Gisele
919-809-6902
Email me

Aligning….
Purpose – Perseverance – Passion

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Living in the Tropics; life and leadership lessons explored

When Mike and I first re-located to Bermuda, a trip into town on our scooter was an adventure that we both looked forward to. Upon approaching the gateway into the city we were often greeted by a man on the side of the road waving frantically with both arms and calling out “Have a nice day!” and “I love you!”. He had a big floppy hat and a full white beard, and wore an ear-to-ear grin. Who was this? Some lunatic with nothing better to do?

Suddenly on one excursion into town we noticed a life-sized statue on our left, of a man  waving…. Could these be connected? We got curious and started asking our friends and neighbors about the history behind a story that has turned out to be one of Bermuda’s most famous stories of genuineness and gratitude.

Johnny BarnesThe man’s name is Johnny Barnes, and far from being an aimless wanderer, he is a man who lives to selflessly give to others. As commuters are driving in to work, Johnny is there to welcome them to town and start their day off with a smile and positivity. He shows up at 3:45am and stays until 10:00am, every workday, rain or shine. He has done this continuously, since 1986, when he was already 60 years old!

We all have it within us to give of ourselves, or “pay it forward” with no expectation of reward. It can be something as small as holding a door for someone, as large as Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg donating 2/3 of his salary to charity every year, or as puzzling and beautiful as Johnny Barnes showing up every morning to spread the love to his fellow islanders.

Check out this video and notice how acts of kindness; big or small can make a difference.

A new year is upon us. As you reflect on 2012, some questions you may choose to reflect on might be…

  • Am I leading my life by example?
  • Am I walking my talk?
  • How can I make a difference?

Remember, who you are being will determine your experience.

What is needed here now?

Gisele
919-809-6902

Aligning….
Purpose – Perseverance – Passion

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Living in the Tropics; life and leadership lessons explored

Why do we do what we do?

Ever hear yourself lament, “I did it again.  When will I learn?” What compels us to repeat the same patterns which can be the cause of emotional pain, heartache even poor health…. repeatedly over our lifetimes?

Some may think that living in the tropics, all your problems and frustrations vanish on the ocean breeze.  True, the environment does help with perspective and attitude, however, issues, habits and roadblocks are still part of the picture, just with a different frame.  Our habits and patterns follow us wherever we go.

Charles Duhigg shares with us in “The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business”  that there are 3 components to understanding our habits:

1)   The Cue
2)   The Routine
3)   The Reward

Check out this video by Duhigg as he explores the 3 components.

For many years, my colleagues and I have been studying “Why” we do what we do. Fueling one’s soul in a day brings energy, light, fulfillment and joy, right?  But what happens if when following our bliss, we fall into a cyclical pattern that causes us to become off center?  Suddenly the joy is turning to frustration and downward we go.

It is at this point where one can take a pause, slowing down to notice (and reflect on) habits and patterns. This is a great way to use axiology in real time. Let’s break down the 3 components of our habits; the cue is our thought (systemic), the routine is what we do (extrinsic) and the reward is our why, our greater purpose (intrinsic).

You may ask yourself….

  • Am I experiencing states of disconnect or frustration?
  • Is there anything in my life causing me to push myself off center?
  • Can I envision a repeated pattern emerging?

Breaking down a habit/pattern and looking at it with a subjective viewpoint can help us gain clarity, self- awareness and perhaps even acceptance for whatever we are experiencing in life.  Know what your cue is, explore your routines and check in with what your reward is.  Give it a try and see what comes up for you.  You never know what barrier you may break through….

What is needed here now?

Gisele
919-809-6902

Aligning….
Purpose – Perseverance – Passion

Living in the Tropics; life and leadership lessons explored…

“You have to reject one expression of [the band] first, before you get to the next expression. In between you have nothing, you have to risk it all”    — Bono

Insert ‘your life’ or ‘your company’ for [the band] and it just brings goosebumps doesn’t it? This was such a powerful quote that esteemed filmmaker Davis Guggenheim positioned it twice in the U2 documentary “From the Sky Down.”

Relocating from Vancouver to Bermuda, I found myself in the space between in my search for a clearer picture of this new reality reflective of lifestyle choices. The gift was in slowing down and being present to heart, mind and body intelligence. However painful it felt and was for me; this traversing from one version of self to another, integrating change from the places of humility, gratitude, forgiveness, intuition, creativity and above all else, LOVE — a new map of life became clearer with each new day.

A favorite book that comes to mind is “hope for the flowers” by Trina Paulus. It is a story of hope and the integration process, within the space in between, as Stripe and Yellow journey from being caterpillars to butterflies.

The Integration process is about redrawing your map of life and filling the empty space with new meaning. With all things in life being impermanent, this process requires the need for you to rebuild confidence and develop acceptance and resilience. The secret of resilience is the ability to see a crisis, or space in between as an opportunity for a new beginning. Remember, a new beginning can only happen when the old form disintegrates.

Some questions you may ask when you find yourself exploring the space in between:

  • What have I learned?
  • How will I fill the space with meaning?
  • Who am I being?

Sometimes it’s not about letting go, it’s about letting it be. We can’t force the events in our lives; all we can do is be present to the flow. Even in the darkest hours of life—if we are truly present—joy shines in the depths…

May joy follow and surround you everywhere.

Gisele
919-809-6902

Aligning….
Purpose – Perseverance – Passion