"It is not the strongest species that survive, nor the most intelligent; it is the species that is most responsive to change."
Sir Charles Darwin

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Leadership Notes -- Thoughts on Leading People and Making a Difference in Organizations

Word count this issue: 374

Estimated reading time:  2:15 minutes


Hello from Vancouver. I’m preparing for medical tests (nothing sinister, we’re just doing middle aged man tests!). I’m on a clear liquid diet and was walking by a bakery on an errand this morning and oh boy am I looking forward to real food sometime on Friday!


It got me thinking about inputs. What do we as leaders allow in to our hearts and minds, and what is the impact of those inputs? Might we for example go an a “clear liquid diet” for our hearts and minds? What might such a diet look like?


Of course, you will have to make up your own mindful diet based on the people and the issues with whom you work. But here are three suggestions:


  1. Gossip is like sugar, it tastes good, and in small quantities is helpful, but there’s a clear limit. The adage, ‘before you speak ask yourself, is it true, is it necessary, is it kind’ is a good way to fight off the sugary gossip temptation.
  2. White bread is not only boring, it turns to gas pretty quickly. The “we’ve always done it that way” thinking is too “white bread.” Try something new, a dark rye may be difficult to find at your local chain restaurant, you have to go and look for it, off the beaten track.
  3. Desserts are meant to be shared. If you sat at a table and someone ate most of the apple pie, you’d be pretty shocked. When things are great, when you are able to celebrate with something special, involve as many people as you can in the celebration. As hard as you worked, others on your team were there as well. Share the pie with them.


And remember, exercise is always key. Don’t allow your brain to remain in habit mode too long, stretch it, challenge it, engage it in places you might feel uncomfortable.


You’ll find your a better leader by developing your own mindful diet. 


I can also recommend the work of David Rock and Daniel Siegle and their “Healthy Mind Platter: http://www.drdansiegel.com/resources/healthy_mind_platter/