Making Right Minded Choices – A Leadership Challenge

right minded
Leaders need to make  right minded choices if we are going to shift to a new paradigm

The world is crying out for change.  Although the economy is showing tentative signs of recovery, environmental issues are  become increasingly urgent and exposure of superficial behaviours by leading figures are well documented, it emerges there is a new desire for something better, something more aligned to who we believe  we  are.  Ethics and values are once again becoming fashionable words and greater consciousness about how we relate to each other is emerging. We desperately need a new world order. 

The problem is of course, the old world order wants to cling on to the way things have always been.   Sometimes the resistance to change is because of fear of the unknown, and sometimes it is to preserve an outdated identity.

The way we work and interact with each other will have to change, if we are to move forward in a less destructive, careless way.  No longer can the old values of self-interest, personal competitiveness and results at all cost be sustainable.   Values, collaboration, responsibility and a recognition that we are all in this together must prevail.

We are all leaders for someone.   It might be our organisation, our family, our children, our partner, our pupils, our siblings, or even our elders. We are all in relationship with each other and like it or not, who we are impacts someone else.  Who we are impacts our society, our environment and our world.

Depending on how much you accept responsibility will determine whether you take up the challenge, or leave it for others to do so.   Leaving it for others to do so is the old world order.  Leaving it for others to do so is abdicating responsibility and giving away your individual power. And we all do that at times.  Even the most enlightened people do, it  is part of our human psyche.

Our choices stem from two paradigms.  One is the mind of the ego.  When we are making choices from an ego paradigm  the characteristics of our choices are cloaked in fear, scarcity, specialness, entitlement and a victim mentality for example.  The other is the mind of our higher self.  When we are making choices with this paradigm, they are characteristically, loving, win/win, from a position of strength, equality, happy and joy based.   We all use these two minds sometimes, although we are often not aware of it

The higher mind is in fact our right or true mind.  When making choices from our right mind it always results in peace, love and happiness.  It recognises that we are all connected and that our true nature is loving and inclusive.

If we are not using our right mind, it is usually because we are afraid, don’t like ourselves very much or feeling guilty about something, even though we may not be consciously aware of it    In many cultures, especially in a work environment, leading and making choices from our right mind can seem fluffy and unrealistic, but actually it is tough and shows strength of real character.  It is indeed the road less travelled.

So in the new world, true leadership will come from those who are able to access the right mind.   This can be a tall order for some people, but a necessary step.  Some of the attributes of someone who uses right minded thinking more consistently than others are:

  • Self-Awareness – An understanding of the choices and impact of choosing between the ego and the right mind.
  • Resilience  – resilience against the ego thought system and the pressure to conform to negative beliefs
  • Ability to tap into the right mind – being able to pause before reacting and choosing ones thoughts.  Living in a different paradigm.
  • Humility – A recognition that we are all in it together and an appreciation that their choices matter and therefore they choose  carefully and with humility
  • Vision – A vision borne out of collective interest and not self interest
  • Responsibility – a no blame culture in every situation.  The victim and persecutor dynamics are dissolved.
  • Generosity – kindness, inclusivity – not excluding anyone, sharing, realising everyone is equally valuable, and can equally make mistakes.
  • Wisdom – understanding when to let go and when to pursue
  • Non – Judgemental – realising everyone is either acting from their right mind, which is love or ego mind which is lack of love.

And finally they will be courageous.  The ego decision maker in our make-up and culture is the norm.  The true leader has to have the courage to put their head above the parapet and challenge the norm, whilst respecting everyone’s right to choose.  No mean task.

Are you a right minded leader?  Do you have examples of great leadership?  What are your views?  I’d love to hear from you.

This post is one very small part of our e.MILE Leadership Challenge.  which is taking place during 2014.  If you would like to join, at no cost, then please sign up on the link.  Do not worry if have already got started, you will have access to back copies and resources once you have signed up.

This great article is from the People Discovery blog, associated with The e.MILE People Development Magazine: the Magazine is currently running a series for the 6 months April to September 2014 based on the challenges identified by The Centre For Creative Leaderships report 2013 Don't Miss Out!  Sign up here to be notified of our subsequent issues and posts

About Christina Lattimer

Christina has managed people for twenty seven years and led hugely successful teams. She has worked with people at all levels in various organisations to help them achieve their potential, and she has been actively involved in the learning and development field in a number of different roles. In latter years she worked as an HR Strategist. She has a range of management qualifications, is a learning professional with a BA Hons in Education, and is a Chartered Fellow of Chartered Institute of Personnel Development. She is passionate about people and believes everyone counts to make a great team.
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9 Comments

  1. Some, as I have been, are often unaware there are people who look to them for leadership. They may not know they are leaders. I can also relate to how fear can affect your decisions. Some of us don’t come to these truths until later in life, and only then, after many mistakes along the way. Knowing and practicing are not the same, but self awareness is a good beginning.

  2. Hi Tom, from one who has made many mistakes, your comments resonate very strongly! I have been lucky though, I have always felt a loving presence, and my intuition urged me to learn from my mistakes and not make them something about my identity. Even then it has taken me years to sort out my right mind from my ego mind, and probably will take many more to put into practice with consistency. As you say though self-awareness is a good beginning, and such awareness starts the journey. Thanks so much for contributing.
    - Christina

  3. Thank you for a thought provoking article Christina. It reflects much of what I like about Maslow’s self actualising level and also spiral dynamics. I am involved in developing leaders both in business and in the community and it is interesting to see how those attributes ring true for many leaders, who as Tom points out often don’t realise yet that they are leading. There is a shift to collaboration and wider social responsibility slowly taking place and I agree it is the brave who are doing this.

    • Toby, thank you for commenting. I hope that we all can help towards the shift, I think more and more people are aware and at some point we will get to the stage where there is really no turning back. Thanks again. Appreciated. – Christina

  4. Christina, I appreciated this, as well as the previous post about reasons to say “Thank You”. And so I do thank you for sharing. Best to you & yours,

  5. Christina, great thoughts and yes we need a new “order” as you call it. Unfortunately, I have some second thoughts on “Ethics and Values once again becoming fashionable words”. Each criminal association has its “values” and own “ethics” on which they operate. Might be they are not acceptable by comunity or social environment they live in but they have them!

    In my blog post “Virtue – Morality – Ethics and leadership” (http://leadershipbyvirtue.blogspot.com/2013/03/virtue-morality-ethics-and-leadership.html)I wrote: “Virtue motivates, morals and ethics constrain” and would like to point out to you that we need Virtue for your “new order” … Agree?

    • Hi Jaro and yes, the words can always have another spin on them! Virtue is a good word as long as it’s not based in ego Jaro, it’s an ego trait to take the moral high ground! :) Sorry, my turn to put a different spin on it! Thank you so much for sharing your blog post, it is thought provoking! Hope this finds you well and wishing you a lovely weekend. Very best Christina :)

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