Leadership Skills: How to Get More Clarity

Wouldn’t it be nice to release tension and achieve clarity instead of struggling with stress by suppressing, coping, and venting?

Clarity leads to power by eliminating illusions and reducing confusion.

The Wellness Book by Herbert Benson, M.D, and Eileen M. Stuart R.N., C., M.S., teaches us to “look” in order to accomplish this. They estimate that 75 percent of medical problems are a result of stress and unresolved tension held in the body.

Ironically, often holding onto a strategy to get us through some upsetting part of our life is easier than facing the prospect of letting it go and re-learning how to function in that situation.

But that’s a short-term versus a long-term gain for the most part, and the responsible way to get through these impedaments is to attack them, and not hide from them.

How do we move on, how do we gain clarity, in life and at work?

When thinking about relaxation, many of us use the imagery of “letting go.” Physically, we mean releasing muscles from habitual, unconscious tension. Mentally, we mean observing and letting go of troubling or worrisome thoughts.

The practice of responsibility (see The Responsibility Process™) is a clearing practice in and of itself, to identify counter-intentions and clear them one-by-one.

There are lots of ways to talk about what it means to clear and release, but one way is almost the opposite of our traditional approach to learning, to gaining ability, competency, or gaining the ability to function.

I was born into a world where we were treated as a blank slate to which various things — i.e., knowledge and skills — needed to be added over many years until we had the ability to function in life or work. So “learning” is an additive model of tacking things on.

Yet the whole approach of clearing and releasing suggests that maybe we already have too much stuff that’s in our own way, and if we can clear some of it, release it, let go of it, then it actually frees us up to be more able, more competent, and more powerful.

That’s why I think about this idea of clearing and releasing as the opposite of what society teaches or tells us about being competent and functioning at a high level.

I define clearing and releasing as identifying and removing emotional, intellectual, physical, conscious or unconscious blocks, tensions, and resistance.

Get Started With This 5-Minute Practice Tip

If you have a lot of clutter in your mind, you use vital energy to maintain it in that state. If you can clear it and clean it up, you release that energy.

Visualize your breathing and think of your inhale as breathing in light and exhale as breathing out toxins and bad stuff, as detoxing mind and body. Breathe in the good and breathe out the bad. I’ve heard that meditation blended with breathing and visualization is a useful way to get started learning.

Once you detox your body of stress you are holding on to, you can move to forgiveness, which is letting go, and gratitude and acknowledgement.

As you get rid of impediments and get clearer on what you want — the kind of life, job, or teamwork you want — you will be more open for the opportunities that are out there that you might otherwise not have noticed or entertained.

Leaders and coaches: Get Christopher’s best team building and leadership strategies collected over two-plus decades of solving teamwork problems for smart people. Attend the acclaimed Creating Results-Based Teams workshop, or get this FREE Special Report while it lasts: The Five Flawless Steps to Building a Strong Executive Leadership Team.

Christopher Avery, PhD, is a recognized authority on how individual and shared responsibility works in the mind and an advisor to leaders worldwide.

Posted in Responsibility on 02/17/2014 10:50 am
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