I want you to know this: You are a leader, and you can step into owning that right now. Because leadership is an inside job: It’s your call whether to be a leader (or not).
The word “leader” is often used to label people who are in a position of power. Leadership is in the job description. And that often colors our beliefs about what we think a leader is (or should be), and gets in the way of us seeing our own leadership capacity. I developed the Living Leadership course because it’s the course I wish I could have taken 30 years ago. It would have saved me from working so hard, trying to live up to an image I had in my head about leadership that didn’t even exist.
You see, leadership is not an endpoint, it’s an attitude. Being a leader is built on self-efficacy: the idea that you do have agency. You can state your case. Your view is valid and wants to be spoken. You don’t even have to feel up to the task to know that the task needs to be done anyway—and that you’re the one to do it, even if the world may not yet recognize your voice or agree with you.
Leadership doesn’t mean you have to feel powerful (although you might). We tend to think that leaders have all the power, but that’s just not the case. There are always limits. Leadership is about seeing the reach of your impact, and the limitations of it, too. Then you continue to give yourself permission to own your purpose, living into your leadership one step at a time.
Leadership is a choice we make in this very moment—to show up fully, to see clearly what is right in front of you, and to act upon it. Living into your leadership is a deliberate practice. It’s a fluid way of being that’s based on choice after choice. And the first choice is knowing what you value.
Sometimes leadership means being a collaborative team player. Sometimes leadership means being directive and clear about what needs to be done—and then making sure it gets done. Sometimes leadership is dancing with life when unexpected market conditions arise or personal tragedies send tsunamis into the best-laid plans. And, most importantly, leadership is about cultivating an awareness that helps you manage the greatest edge of all: your own self.
Living into your leadership means always evolving—being responsive to the whole of who we are now, the wholeness of the environment we’re in, and the wholeness of others. And it certainly includes the aspirational vision of who we could become, individually and together.
Ultimately, your leadership is needed because the world at large, and your personal world, needs you to lead. It’s that simple. We need leadership at all levels, not just for an elite few.
Leadership is for all—not just those with management in their job description.
Join Megan in the Living Leadership course, beginning March 30, 2020.
Megan is the award-winning author of Infinity in a Box and A Minute for Me. Megan uses divergent thinking and creative perspectives to build organizations and networks that harness the best in people for the greatest good. With a degree in nuclear medicine, senior leadership experience in health care, two decades as a yoga practitioner and teacher, and experience directing numerous online-learning start-ups, Megan focuses on how to get from point A to point B through whole-person engagement. A national media source for Fast Company, Yoga Journal, and Woman’s Day, Megan is an explorer at heart, working with the WBI team to navigate the path from dreaming about the summit to actually climbing the mountain.