Becoming conscious, awakened, or even enlightened, starts when we realize that we can break from the passive world into the active one. No longer are we controlled by the randomness of life, instead, we place ourselves in a position of control and management. It all starts with a change of awareness and can be realized by anybody.
For leaders, becoming conscious is a vital part of driving a thriving business, as it allows them to gain better control of the self and its leadership functions. To be self-aware and authentic doesn’t mean the world (or business) revolves around you, but it does allow you to gain a fuller perspective of an entire organization. Vision expands beyond today. A culture of trust is built. Morale increases. Productivity soars. Everyone wins.
Quotes about Consciousness
- The Stoic philosopher Seneca once said ‘We suffer more in imagination than in reality”
- Indian Guru Jaggi Vasudev explained: “Your thoughts and emotions are the drama that you create in your mind. You must be able to end it somewhere”
- “The awakening of consciousness is the next evolutionary step for Mankind”, thought Eckhart Tolle
Conscious Leadership: An Overview
So, what exactly is Conscious Leadership?
- The practice of being self-aware
- Developing our reasoning for how we think and see the world
- Being mindful of our experiences
- Examining our default response patterns
- Giving ourselves the option to choose our attitude and response
To combine all of these concepts together and summarize them, it is working on the inner self (mind, body, soul) so that the outer self reflects our development. This reflection, in leadership terms, is often seen as effectiveness, superior performance, and equilibrium.
Conscious leadership is not:
- A destination to be arrived at
- Something you can achieve and then forget about
- A skill that requires no input
- Failing to show up because you’ve already done some hard work
It is a continual process that can go on for your entire lifespan. Ultimately, it helps people to understand their place in the world and the organization they lead. This level of self-awareness, especially emotionally, cannot be achieved overnight. To truly understand our own character is something even Buddhist monks may not achieve in a lifetime of meditation. Wisdom, courage, and the tact to use them nobly will require great humility and acceptance.
How can you spot a Conscious Leader?
It’s easier than you think to find a leader who displays the attributes of a conscious leader because they are:
- Committed to learning
- Show courage and conviction
- Mindful of others
More commonly found are unconscious leaders, who are:
- Committed to being right
With hard work and desire, even the most stubborn individuals can change.
Why is Conscious Leadership so important?
You, simply by reading this, are growing. Your mind is in a constant state of expansion. Some activities, such as reading personal development content, will help it to grow faster than, say, watching cartoons. Life can be a passive journey of dealing with what it throws at us, or it can be an evolution of the self and becoming our truest versions. When we live consciously, we are more likely to find and fulfil our purpose, at which point it will be clear to those around us that we are conscious leaders.
When we find ourselves, our purposes, and our ‘why’, we also have to find their places in our complex and often confusing daily lives. We are confronted by technological change, political change, societal change, abundant information, and delicate economies which filter their way in without us often realizing. All of this change and disruption can naturally overwhelm us, but we can’t undo how complex and dynamic the world is, so we must work on improving our own conscious responses to it.
Imagine if the whole world took the time as individuals to better understand ourselves and our roles on Earth. Do you think we’d be better problem solvers, more compassionate entities, more patient, better at managing, and more courageous?
Now it’s your turn: Find the highest version of yourself
Curious to evolve and reach a greater state of consciousness?
There are many different theories, methods, and programs that you can find online or in textbooks. We’ve read and digested them and found that there are some central and actionable themes, which you can read below.
Personal development can happen at any stage in life, but certainly, as an adult, it comes about through recognition and reflection that growth may be necessary. You may have detected unhealthy coping mechanisms, self-limiting beliefs, or harmful thought patterns. You might be easily triggered, defensive, or aggressive, and want to find solutions.
Each and every expert on conscious development will help you to work on self-awareness, to listen to your thoughts, emotions, and knowledge, and live in the present moment.
There’s nothing wrong with asking for help. When we endeavor to take on new challenges, and personal growth is no exception, we can always benefit from leaning on those with deeper knowledge and experience. Finding them and asking for an assessment will be key to giving you direction for your journey to becoming a conscious leader. Different types of assessments exist, but they all provide similar answers - how to help you find the highest version of yourself.
Many belief systems around the world, especially Buddhism, advocate intentional breathing as a way to enhance your sense and rationality. Inhale and exhale repeatedly and soon your body will start to feel different. You may feel more aware, more relaxed, happier, or more focused. It may make you feel more resolute or ready for what’s coming. Do it frequently enough, and it will become an empowering habit.
Making choices at every turn
To conclude this article, we want to give you 8 choices that you can take away and think about:
- Choosing to be responsible and accepting that we are the source of our own luck, control, approval, resolution, and more
- Choosing to accept and listen to our emotions
- Choosing to accept and reveal our authenticity and the stories of our lives, helping us to connect to others
- Choosing to learn from people and the planet and how the universe works in our favor
- Choosing to be clear about your boundaries and making agreements that you believe in
- Choosing to find and embrace our genius and creativity
- Choosing to laugh, play, nap, cook, and love - because we have the choice!
- Choosing to see life as abundance rather than scarcity - we have more time, energy, love than we think we need
Good luck on your journey.
Develop skills and self-awareness through experiential learning. Check out our Future-Proofing Leaders for 2030 white paper.