04 Feb Leading From Your Wounds Can Hurt Or Heal
There were five kids in my family, and I am the youngest. My dad built our house, and it took awhile, so when I came along, my crib was in a bedroom with two of my brothers. In fact, I shared that room until I was about four. (Being the only girl had its perks, like not having to share a room). There wasn’t any extra money in those days, so I kept sleeping in the crib with the side down. That is how my first scar came to be. I was actually making my crib, and I slipped. I fell and cut myself right above my eye. It’s mostly hidden by my eyebrow, however, it’s visible if you know where to look.
Since then, I have had many wounds that have left scars on the inside as well as the outside. I don’t think any of us goes through life unscathed. In fact, one of my favorite questions to ask during a class is “Who’s got shit in their lives?” My hand is the first to go up, and I’ve yet to have anyone not raise their hand. It’s what we choose to do with the shit that matters.
Think about those scars you have that people can see. They can make the best stories with the best lessons i.e. I learned to never do that on my skateboard again, or I will only show love to those who matter most to me. OR they can remind you of a painful time, which you then pass on to someone else.
As leaders, it’s important to self-reflect on how we are using our scars. Are we leading from a place of pain where we want others to know how hard we’ve had it, what we’ve had to overcome, and as a result, make them pay their dues? Be honest with yourself. I know I’ve done that in my past, and it wasn’t fun for anyone.
Conversely, can we step back, learn the lesson and lead from a place of growth? Under these conditions, we bring the best of ourselves by using our wounds to help and heal others rather than wound them even more.
We truly are powerful beings. First, we must do the work to recognize our wounds and scars for the gifts they really are. Then, it’s from that place, we can inspire others to do the same. That’s leading from a space of true strength.
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