To be in leadership is tough. It requires great courage. But what can make it more difficult is when the leader is given to fear, doubt or insecurity. It’s been said that courage has no benchmark unless one grasps the reality of fear. Leaders who are given to fear can weaken their organizations’ ability to function. They can compromise productivity (effectiveness), decision-making, strategic thinking and volunteer (employee) management. But while it is true that fear can be strong and quite disruptive, our response to it defines our leadership toughness and resilience.
Our pattern of responses towards specific situations spring from similar emotional experience we had in the past. A history of pain or suffering can lead one to anticipate the worst and expect negative outcomes. Growing up in a dysfunctional environment where there is a shortage of positive role models will greatly impact one's outlook in life. Humiliation and rejection can scar one’s spirit to the point of dismay and fear. For example, placing too high a value on a specific goal transforms it into an unrealistic objective. The dire need to obtain something creates the illusion that life will be awful if the goal isn’t accomplished; the consequent failure becomes traumatic. Perhaps the common denominator for all causes of fear of failure is an overarching necessity for validation through achievement. The most significant truth that our past and our fear cause us to doubt is that everyone can be a leader.
Going through life with fear of failure is a significant personal struggle. But the good news is that even if one's fear cannot be completely eliminated, it can be overcome by a major shift in perspective and this is something an our life coaches can assist you with.
Begin by recognizing that no one is immune to failure. Coming to grips with your fear, understanding that it’s real, and recognizing when it is affecting your leadership (and life) are steps towards the right direction. In fact, fear is not always bad. Healthy fears allow us to respect and remain aware of potential hazards. Stepping out of our comfort zone and into the unknown will undoubtedly challenge us. We will realize that fear can also be a sign of growth.
Another positive shift in perspective is recognizing that people survive failures all the time. Failure is not final and everyone has experienced failure at one time or another. It has intrinsic benefits for it helps us learn and grow. Wisdom, work ethic, strength and self-improvement are seldom attributable to a continued string of successes. There’s no better way to discover your strengths and weaknesses than through failure’s lessons.
As future and current leaders within our area of influence, we have tried to copy the management styles of successful leaders. But we get overwhelmed when confronted by our own doubts, fears or rejection. Our past experienced and childhood greatly influence also our decision making.
Leadershift will enable us to tap our emotional and social intelligence skills to create a more fulfilling future. The truth is that we had these talents, knowledge and skills birthed and developed as a means to cope with issues, hurts and struggles in life. We used them to fill our desires with substance, relationships and other means to satisfy our desires. But unfortunately, they were never dealt with properly as we allowed our past hurts and habits define our identity. This can be an easy trap for anyone to fall in.
We were never aware then that these mechanisms can be harnessed into valuable talents—all natural, nurtured and provided—to serve our god given purpose and mission in life. They were present in us since the beginning and we are not aware of them, instinctively we use them to survive or satisfy ourselves. Rightly identified and appropriately practiced, it will make it easier for us to inspire and lead people into fulfilling their own god-given mission. This is what leadershift is all about.