How would your approach change if you knew ahead of time that a challenging employee, client or situation was actually going to help you become a better leader?
A problem by itself is not the problem. The problem is how we look at a problem. (Try saying that three times in a row) 😉
All too often, the first thing we do when adversity appears is focus on the negatives. I strongly believe failure and adversity are only present in our lives to help us, not hurt us. It’s extremely important for me to never lose sight of this truth.
Intellectually, we know we need to redirect our energy when engulfed in a problem, but that isn’t always easy to do. As humans, our minds like to wander toward the negative. Our ego loves to magnify a problem instead of searching for ways to resolve the situation and grow from it.
Every leader has the power of choice. We can choose to respond or react to complicated situations. The choice is ours. Consciously or unconsciously, we are forever giving everything meaning, but we have the power to attach the meaning that is most helpful.
When we focus only on a problem, the problem has a way of multiplying. If we redirect our energy towards finding a solution, we will eventually discover things we can experiment with. Every time we courageously try something new, our own experience informs us of what works and what doesn’t. This valuable insight helps us make adjustments that will lead us one step closer to our ultimate goal. Often, the answers we seek only require a minor adjustment to what we are already doing.
If adversity strikes, I encourage you to fully reflect on your situation in solitude. When we consciously think of more ways to overcome our current obstacles, we grow from the situation at hand. Give yourself the freedom to apply the 24-hour rule. Every 24-hours, we have an opportunity to hit the reset button. This leadership practice will revitalize your mind and refocus your energy so you can calmly evaluate your options.
One of the biggest challenges I see amongst many leaders, especially newly appointed ones, is their overwhelming desire to have a business that is problem-free. Make no mistake: Business success doesn’t come from a lack of problems. The growth of any business is dependent on how well their leaders manage through adversity.
Is there a challenge weighing heavily on your mind? Remember, you are never alone—support is always available. Contact me and I will help you look at your situation from a completely different perspective.