Transforming Leaders into Mindful Leaders
I'm a social media ghostwriter who helps leaders communicate and connect better. As a former branding consultant, my role is to make it easier for my clients to share th I cover personal transformation and its impact on career growth. Your environment always wins.
Share to facebook Share to twitter Share to linkedin. Photo via Getty Royalty Free. Amy Blaschka Contributor. Read More. That day when I stepped out of prison and looked at the people observing, a flush of anger hit me with the thought that they had robbed me of 27 years. Until he recognized what was happening.
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Then, he made a different choice. Obviously, we are not totally free from conditions—tsunamis happen, leadership changes, employees are laid off, friends fall ill, and people die—but we are totally free to take a stand in lieu of them. Madiba taught us that at some time in our lives we are all victims of something, but we get to choose whether or not we will be victimized.
No child is born to discriminate.
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We learn to hate. And, if we learn to hate people based on their gender, political affiliation or the color of their skin, we can also learn to love, even in the direst of circumstances. It is a wonderful example of the healing power of love. In marriage, in social justice and certainly in business, you can focus your energy on being right or ending right.
The former is often about ego and focuses on the past.
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The latter is future-oriented and focuses on what you are ultimately trying to achieve. Strong-willed and determined, Nelson Mandela never cowered. He vehemently fought for what he believed in, but he was also humble and kind. Here, he taught us about the power of collaboration and compromise:.
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A good leader can engage in a debate frankly and thoroughly, knowing that at the end he and the other side must be closer, and thus emerge stronger. Whether it is an employee, customer or partner, when you engage in a debate is your motive to become closer? To have both sides emerge stronger? Or, to win the argument? Imprisoned for 27 years and then vindicated. Who could endure that kind of oppression and not feel some desire for revenge? Yet, Madiba reached across enemy lines and extended a hand because ending right was more important than being right.
The two leaders were a symbol of collaboration and compromise for bringing a peaceful termination to apartheid and for laying the foundation for a new democratic South Africa. Mandela captured the essence of what happened this way:. The efforts of a small dedicated group of leaders working objectively and without any vested personal interest in the outcome, can help resolve what often seem like intractable problems. To be successful in business, politics or relationships of any kind requires the ability to give and take where all sides gain more.
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Madiba poignantly reminded us, the world can be a better place, but only if we work together to make it one. If there was a silver lining to his years of imprisonment, Madiba said it was to look in the mirror and create within himself that which he most wanted for South Africa: peace, reconciliation, equality, harmony and freedom.
Perhaps his most profound impact and greatest legacy was to teach us, through vivid, living, personal example, to be human before anything else. Self-awareness is a sign of great leadership. Madiba understood that this difference starts with who we are and how we land on others as leaders.
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His joyful and infectious character sparked hope for millions of people who want to dream big and pursue their dreams without oppressive limitations, who want to live in a world of tolerance, inclusion and hope. What constitutes a life of meaning and significance? How do we know that we have really lived?