Woo-hoo! Saturday I wrapped up the heart-centered, content rich 12th Annual Design Your Destiny Live event! 

I am so humbled by all the attendees who showed up, connected with each other and put in the work to begin the process of designing their destiny.

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One of the most humbling aspects of the work I do is listening to the stories of the women and men I am honored and blessed to work with throughout the year.

While most stories are amazing and good, these stories come in all shapes and sizes with villains and heroines, battles of evil and good.

Every so often, you get to witness someone at their most vulnerable.

It is in these moments it is as if a little slice of heaven opens up and you’re invited in.

These moments often move me to tears as I listen in silence simply holding space and offering a safe refuge.

When I trained for my master coaching certification, I was warned not to get emotionally involved in the lives of my clients. Since then, I have had to learn the nuances of what it meant.  

Connecting human to human, how can I not be moved by the rawness and realness of what is shared in confidence, often by people who the world celebrates for their business acumen and financial success and yet feel helpless in one area of their life?!?

In my own witnessing, there are feelings that bubble up in the silence that I push aside to remain impartial.

Sadness.

Anger.

Grief.

When I’m closing out the day, I let it all wash off of me in the shower.

I wash away the sadness, anger, and grief from the stories that are not my own, yet are now part of me.

And still, these stories move through my system.

Perhaps as a leader this is what you’ve been training for your entire life.

You’ve been learning how to listen deeply with compassion and mercy.

You’ve been learning how to be with yourself and others and find the beauty in every moment.

You’ve been learning how to connect human to human without judgment and without getting directly involved in what isn’t yours. 

You’ve been learning how to imagine a new possibility in the darkest moments and see a great light.

Maybe… just maybe… this is why you are here.  

Why I am here.

Great leadership isn’t about getting the last email sent, meeting a deadline, or mapping out your team’s yearly goals.

Great leadership is about people. People and relationships.

People follow the person first, then their great plan.

Choose to be a leader worth following. Be an expert in people as well as your expertise.

Action

The Upside Challenge of the week is to take time to listen to the stories of the people around you.

Notice how you listen and the quality of your own thoughts and feelings as you listen.

How do you take care of yourself so you allow yourself to feel and yet can be clear that what is theirs is theirs?

How does the depth of your listening affect the intimacy and depth of connection and the value?

Can you be a person listening with an open heart and be an expert at the same time?

The world needs you and your brilliance.

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