3 Courageous Steps to Reducing Your Negative Voice

I’ve been reminded in the last few weeks how much I really don’t know.  I’ve been reminded how important it is not to make assumptions or indeed let my ‘negative voice’ dictate my behaviour.  I truly do not know what someone is going to say or how they are going to react.  I mean it makes sense, how could I?  I who I am and they are who they are – I cannot read other’s minds.

I have had many conversations over the past 6-8 weeks about courses I’m teaching and about coaching.  Many conversations, not about what I’m offering per se but about individuals lives, roles and what they are wanting to change or develop in their leadership.  I’m grateful as I sit typing this that these are the conversations I get to have most of the time – transforming, empowering conversations that sometimes in themselves have many insights for me and others.

I realised after three conversations this week (where I was extremely doubtful of getting the outcome I wanted) how massively important it is not to listen to my ‘negative voice’.  I was fearful enough that I seriously considered not even asking the question that I really wanted to ask.  This was because of course my negative voice’s commentary had already started:  ‘They won’t be interested’, ‘They will say no or not now, ‘They will say I can’t afford it or I can’t do the dates’…and I will be left disappointed, de-motivated and resigned to the fact I have to do more to engage more people.

Well what I actually did was I decided that I can connect, listen, ask the questions I want to ask and see what happens.  And then my friends I was shocked!  All 3 people just said yes!  And now I am thrilled – for them, for me and for the difference this will make to leadership in the world.

So my question to you is…where do you hold back, avoid asking the question you really want to ask?

Have a go at these 3 Courageous Steps:

  • Listen In – to your negative voice…what assumptions are you making about what may or may not happen? About how someone may respond?
  • Check-In – with those assumptions…how do you really know what that person will say or what the future holds? When in the past has someone said something you didn’t expect?
  • Be Curious – and courageous, take a deep breath and ask that question! You never know…none of us do…trust, be open…see what happens.  And if you get a response you don’t want… is it likely you will handle it?

Learn how to increase your willingness to be courageous, get past your ‘negative voice’ and put yourself forward.  Step In, Step Up in your Leadership.  And learn the tools to keep this going for yourself, for the rest of your life.

Come and join me in a warm and empowering environment, in my online taster session for The Power of Self Esteem course.

Taster sessions are on Wednesday’s 28th September or 5th or 12th October 6-7:30pm.

I’d love to see you there…

FREE tickets here: Book FREE Online Taster for Power of Self Esteem

Nicci Statham is an executive coach who specialises in changing behaviour, she is passionate about empowering clients to transform their results through changing their attitude and behaviour.  Follow her on Twitter @awareleadership.

 

Leadership give and take

Don't Assume, Ask

Wow, an extremely eventful week for me this week.  The theme I’ve been reflecting on, delivering leadership training on and living – is partnership.

Have we ever really thought about what we want in any given partnership? Think about some key partnerships you have in leadership – do you give more than you take or take more than you give?

For me I generally like a healthy balance, in some contexts the partnership may be one of service – hence an imbalance may be perfectly appropriate or indeed working as is.

I wonder though do we ever really stop to think about what we want and need before we engage in a partnership. Every relationship is a partnership right? Sometimes the tendency can be to assume we and the other knows what our expectation is. How would they though if we haven’t even thought about it, let alone expressed it?

Something to ponder then. What’s your purpose for your partnerships?

How’s that working for you?

 

Leadership give and take

Don't Assume, Ask

Wow, an extremely eventful week for me this week.  The theme I’ve been reflecting on, delivering leadership training on and living – is partnership.

Have we ever really thought about what we want in any given partnership? Think about some key partnerships you have in leadership – do you give more than you take or take more than you give?

For me I generally like a healthy balance, in some contexts the partnership may be one of service – hence an imbalance may be perfectly appropriate or indeed working as is.

I wonder though do we ever really stop to think about what we want and need before we engage in a partnership.

Every relationship is a partnership right? Sometimes the tendency can be to assume we and the other knows what our expectation is. How would they though if we haven’t even thought about it, let alone expressed it?

Something to ponder then.  What’s your purpose for your partnerships?

How’s that working for you?

Humanity in Leadership

Forgiveness is an Attitude

During many coaching sessions this week a similar theme started to arise. ‘I should have done X’, ‘I’ll get it wrong’…followed by a range of feared scenarios whereby the leader, the team and others are going to suffer considerably.

I wondered whether there’s a pre-determination in this attitude.  If we have already decided we’ve failed, where is there to go? What future is there to commit to? AND what a great excuse to give up, pull back or not confront our own fear of stepping up our game?

Of course then there is the truth. You, I and Everyone Else is a human being. And human being = fallible.  Perfect?  The epitome?  Who knows what or where that is?  I wouldn’t want to know it anyway, where’s the challenge in that? Where the leadership growth?

So forgive yourself and get back in.  Step up to being the awesome leader you are – one more time….and again…and again…and again…

Expectations in Leadership

Difference Hope and Expectation

I was thinking this week, wow what an interesting week – then I realised every week is an interesting week when I am awake to noticing growth in my leadership!

The theme that’s been coming up this week is how in leadership we can get ourselves attached to a particular result or outcome.

Determination, purpose and a strong will is wonderful, however what about when this crosses the line into a demand? How does this affect our relationships and partnerships with others?

I realised yesterday that when I’m going into a coaching session or conversation and expecting a particular result, I’m focused on that and sometimes not the reality of what’s actually happening.

Where’s the partnership in that? Where’s the room for the other person, where’s the room for possibility and creativity?

Whilst I have this demand – particularly one that’s based on my preferences, my desires and my assumptions – how can the other person ever meet that?

So let’s flip it I thought. Thus I discovered the expectation I have is one I’ve placed on myself – derived from my fear of what I will be or look like if I don’t achieve the result.  Of course none of that was true.

Dealing with that first and then going back in was a very different experience…

The Educational Energy of Possibility

Reflection of leadership

I had a school client this week that came in frazzled and exasperated because another one of her staff had resigned.

Totally understandable, her continuing challenges are time and getting to a place where the workload eases up. She sees her main issue in this as not having enough time. We all have the same amount of time though, right?

What I noticed more than anything was the utter resignation she was in about finding a new member of staff – and one that will fit perfectly.

What energy does this create, being in a frame of mind that no matter what we do, we are not going to get what we want in the timeframe we want. Sure, there’s a logistical reality – Christmas is nearly here and people may be on holiday etc.

However, I wondered whether in this mindset we can ever create what we are so desperately seeking? Being resigned, defeated and assuming we will fail, doesn’t this create a certain energy?

Even if we have doubts, when we get to the point where we have possibilities in front of us – are they likely to say YES to such a resigned or fear driven nature?

If you believe the theories about the law of attraction, we draw to ourselves the same energy we put out.

If nothing else, we could definitely have a good hard look at the truth of our assumptions…

Leadership and the purpose of possibility

Miracles Start to happen...

I’ve had lots of conversations this week with school clients about shifting perspective so they can think about what they REALLY want to create for their school for young people.

How often do we tap into our sense of wonder and possibility? There can be a tendency to go straight to impossibility…Oh that will never happen, that won’t work because…. or so-and-so is never going to agree to that.

If we want in this state of impossibility, can we ever truly know what we want?

What if we just allowed ourselves to WANT? A no holds barred, free thinking journey to let ourselves connect to our highest vision and our deepest values. That childlike sense of wonder and just wanting – with no demands or consequences attached.

We can allow ourselves that can’t we – even if it never happens?

See, I think there’s something about allowing ourselves to BE in this space and go for what we really want in our imagination – maybe there we will see infinite possibilities we never have seen otherwise.

Because really, how do we know it’ll never happen anyway?

What does it really take to empower others?

Fill the Gap with Trust

The theme this week has been empowerment…what does it really take to empower our students, school teams and even ourselves?

As educational leaders we can be impatient, jumping in because we believe something or someone should be moving quicker or doing things differently.  If this is how we operate, how can we ever truly hold an empowering context for our teams?

I know for me to truly empower, this takes a huge amount of patience – in myself, in others and ultimately in the unknown of what may happen if I truly let go and TRUST…

Leadership and gratitude

Live Gratitude

This week I’ve heard a lot of what’s not happening, what isn’t working and what school leader clients don’t want.

This happens for all us doesn’t it? There’s always a problem to sort – an issue to fix.

Sometimes we can get into the familiar domain of impossibility. No! This shouldn’t be happening, we should have got the school results we wanted or staff should have responded differently or behaved exactly how we wanted.

That’s the expectation right?

In this realm can lie the domain of resignation, defeat, resistance and even despair.

What about what is happening, what IS working? AND how we can bring about our own willingness to step out of impossibility to create what we actually do want?

If we focus on this we get to practise courage, resilience, determination and most of all acknowledgement of ourselves, life and others just as they are.

There lies the domain of possibility, openness, creativity and most certainly joy.