Seven Steps to New Leadership
You could be more. Can you live with that? Leaders don’t.
There’s hope if you’re unhappy.
Contentment chokes growth.
7 Steps to New Leadership:
#1. Distress fuels discontent and drives urgency.
Every step toward meaning begins with dissatisfaction, discomfort, discontent, and disaffection. “Dis” is a beginning.
Everything great begins with unhappiness.
#2. Stepping out.
You try something new and hang on to the old, at the same time. You can’t forsake certainties for uncertainties. You cling to the old while trying on new behaviors.
#3. New discomfort.
Living your old life, while testing the new, feels awkward at best. Living in two worlds fuels new dissatisfaction and discomfort. The point is the old has to go, but the new is tenuous.
The uncertain path forward always includes the temptation to surrender the dream and cling to the known.
#4. New clarity.
Discomfort initiates growth. Vision guides it.
Do something new while letting go of something old. You’re still living with one foot in the old world and one in the new. The new world energizes; the old frustrates.
#5. New identity emerges.
“Becoming,” not “doing,” is real growth.
Stepping out emboldens the new you. You must do new things. But, the lasting opportunity is embracing new identity.
The ultimate question is, “Who do you want to become.”
#6. Identity determines behavior.
When “doing” drives living, frustration grows. When identity drives behavior, fulfillment grows.
#7. Letting go and taking hold.
New identity enables you to let go the old and grasp the new.
As new identity emerges the grip of old behaviors relaxes. Eventually, you release old behaviors that defined you.
Possibility and danger:
The second round of frustration (#3.) is the point of greatest danger and possibility.
Let go the old, while reaching for the new. Those who can’t let go, fall back.
Surrender the dream, lose yourself.
What would you add to this seven phase growth cycle?
How might this growth cycle apply to organizations?