4.1 Law of Attraction: Exude Energy and Inspiration
EGL Newsletter Volume 4.1
I trust 2007 is opening new and exciting possibilities for you. It certainly is here at the Gaian Group. We have many new clients coming in with interesting new challenges. One of the most rewarding pieces is to look back at 2006 and see the success stories of people with whom we have worked. It is a gift for us to be able to join people on their journeys of personal change and development.
This is the fifth newsletter that highlights the Law of Attraction as it gets lived out through the Five Competencies for Transformational Leadership. This one, on Presence, may come last on the list, but certainly is not the least. Our business focuses on a leader’s ability to create Inspirational Presence. Today, let’s look at why this is so important.
First of all, as a leader, we must absolutely own our thoughts and our emotions. As we know from the Law of Attraction, what we focus on, we attract. In any system, the degree to which we can create an open, enthusiastic, and positive environment directly correlates to the overall probability of success.
Leaders have a primordial role in any given group. They are responsible for group emotions. Interestingly, I have known many people in leadership positions who have argued vehemently with this. Those have also been leaders of troubled systems that had a number of problems. Most of these were looking outside themselves and were convinced that they just needed better people around them. However, they had the direction of causality backwards. It is clear through research in social systems that the leader’s emotional state translates directly into the overall feelings of the environment. At this level, a leader is responsible for spreading enthusiasm and clearing toxic waste from the system. Interestingly, I am personally continuing to learn just how many places where this is the case. While it is easy to see (through traditional thinking) a leader as responsible for making the hard decisions and setting the business direction, these are items more aligned with management. If we think about a higher purpose of leadership, setting an emotional tone where creativity is safe and supported is much more important for a system to have generative capabilities.
There are physiological reasons for this. When we look at human beings, we are strongly impacted by our limbic system responses, or those that relate to our emotions, our physical feelings, and our overall energy and enthusiasm. The unique aspect of the limbic system is that it is an open loop. That means, our limbic system responds openly to those around us. Feelings spread through social systems through contagion, and the leader must take responsibility for shaping that. The feelings spread can be either resonant or dissonant. Obviously, groups of people who collectively resonate with an idea create a much greater power for accomplishing a goal than a group that expresses dissonance.
Every leader (for that matter, every person) has presence. As we expand our personal consciousness and awareness, we begin to learn about that presence. How are other people impacted by us? Do they feel compelled by our ideas or repelled by them? Do they feel compelled by our presence or repelled by it? Exceptional leaders understand this and work to build their authenticity, and therefore create a compelling presence. The real gift in this undertaking is that by tapping into this sense of authenticity, it automatically begins to expand it in our lives. Everyone around us begins to brighten up, to open up, and to put off a bit more light (remember the Law of Attraction?).
Ready to learn more? Take a few minutes, take some notes, and change your life.
Exude Energy & Inspiration (Presence)
Cutting across all the other competencies is the pure presence that great leaders exude. This is not the same as charisma, but is the ability to be open and authentic enough for people around the leader to personally feel and be impacted by that leader’s passion. This is the sense that the leader has a direction, has energy to pursue it, and is genuinely enjoying the pursuit. It is the feeling of confidence in the intention of the leader. It is the recognition that the leader is indeed charting the course and is living towards it. Through this, people around that leader will also be inspired to take creative action towards the goal of the future. At the Gaian Group, we call this core area Inspirational Presence.
So, let’s take this apart a bit. First, let’s understand the difference between inspiration and motivation. Here are a couple of definitions.
Main Entry: ecstasy
Synonyms: Blessedness, bliss, delight, delirium, ebullience, elation, enthusiasm, exaltation, fervor, gladness, happiness, joy, rapture
Main Entry: excitement
Synonyms: Action, activity, ado, agitation, drama, enthusiasm, excitation, fever, flurry, furor, movement, stimulation, turmoil, wildness
Note: Ecstasy – to stand outside the ordinary self
Roget’s Thesaurus, 2001
Let’s take that to an even deeper meaning
Inspiration – the divine breath of life
To live in the ebb and flow of a force that is greater than one-self – to connect to a purpose that is higher than one-self.
To make clear, we are not in the business of motivation, where only excitement and movement prevail. We are working towards inspiration, where our creative self can consistently draw the breath of life, and breathe that into our endeavors.
The other aspect we consider is Presence. Let’s take a look at that.
That portion of another human being that you sense without being asked to do so
Can be small or large
Can be compelling or repelling
Indefinable yet palpable
Is the basis of connection between beings
Let’s put that together into a meaningful and useable context with a simple definition.
Inspirational Presence is the ability to connect authentically with others; to use your thoughts, feelings, and intuitions to inspire others towards your cause.
Put together, leaders with Inspirational Presence are connected to some greater truth for their own direction. They have gone through the journey of understanding what is important and where they draw their own passion and enthusiasm. They have become clear about their own sense of purpose and have come to live from there. In that certainty, they have developed the ability to be transparent, authentic, and present. You will see in the literature, being transparent is a positive attribute for leadership. However, it is not enough by itself. It is what people see when the veil is dropped that provides the inspiration. This sense of personal clarity, profound passion, and commitment allow people to lead from a place that is outside of their ordinary self. This is the power of Inspirational Presence.