How to Defeat a Small Grinchy Heart – Four Things Big Hearted Leaders Learn

“And what happened, then? Well, in Whoville they say – that the Grinch’s small heart grew three sizes that day.” Dr. Seuss

It wasn’t that the Grinch wanted to experience joy. He just wanted others to be miserable.

Life gives good reasons to live with a small grinchy heart.

Image of a smiling rain cloud.

A warning sign of small heartedness is nothing bothers you.

Reasons hearts shrivel:

Hurtful experiences are justifications to wall-in your heart. You want to protect yourself from pain. It’s logical to run from pain but rejecting an inevitability of life makes your heart small.

A warning sign of small heartedness is nothing bothers you.

Pretending everything is OK when there’s pain in your heart has a shrinking effect on life. You don’t have to wear your feelings on your sleeve. But everyone needs to feel seen and understood.

It makes sense to protect yourself, but self-protective people have small grinchy hearts.

Four things big hearted leaders learn:

  1. The more you need to get done, the more you need to care for people. Pressure to get things done makes some leaders forget the power of caring for people.
  2. At the end of the day, the truest question is, “How much did you care for the people?”
  3. Caring for people is the secret ingredient of engagement. People are more likely to engage if they know you care.
  4. The heart of leadership is turning your focus toward the welfare of others.

A big heart:

#1. Grows through painful experiences.

You can always spot a person who has suffered well. They have a tender heart. When we accept our own pain, we learn empathy.

#2. Enjoys people.

Allow enjoyment to defeat misery. You can’t help but see the need for improvement in everything. Everything can always be better.

Big hearted leaders don’t let the need for improvement block the joys of imperfect attainment.

What does a small grinchy heart look like to you?

How might leaders grow big hearts?