In these first several weeks of the new year, have you found yourself evaluating your approach to certain aspects of your life? “This year I will do it better!” Whatever “it” is. Are you confused where to seek guidance? You could listen to TED talks, buy the latest self- improvement book or maybe take a course. Seeking support and growth in areas that haven’t been working well is part of being a better leader in our own life. It’s quite possible the approach you’ve taken to life could use some self-reflection and honest evaluation. I don’t know about you, but I often find myself overloaded in our age of 24/7 information. Who do I listen to? Where do I go for concise answers I can apply now? I want my approach to life, my “stance” to be authentic with strength and meaning. I don’t want to just be a copy of somebody else.
You may have experience with a certain physical stance required in an athletic activity or with a musical instrument in order to play well. You may have taken a “stance” on an issue or cause where you wanted to make a difference in the world.
A stance is simply “a position or bearing of the body while standing; a mental or emotional position adopted with respect to something”. It is foundational. It is a core element in leading well in your own life and most definitely when leading others. We each possess our own unique “stance”. It is the reference point we use in how we approach life situations, our work, and relationships with others. It guides how we conduct ourselves in all we do.
According to research conducted by Gallup ®, humans operate within four domains of concentrated talents or “strengths”. Talents are naturally recurring patterns of thought, feeling, or behavior that can be productively applied. When we become aware of our talents and learn how to apply them to our daily lives, they become strengths. A strength is the ability to consistently provide near-perfect performance in a specific activity.
A group of related talents make up a domain. Dr. Don Clifton (1924-2003) determined four domains of behavior. We are hard-wired to that individual way of being and thinking. It is how we succeed. Talents, and therefore domains, are neutral. They are equally powerful. Gallup’s Strengths Domains divide out as Strategic Thinking®, Executing®, Influencing®, and Relationship Building®. The real power comes in when we name, claim and aim our talents. Our unique “stance” is powerful when we know what it is and how to use it for consistent positive results.
During the next several weeks we will look at each domain using the concept of a different leadership stance. The Captain, The Archer, The Sensei, or The Coach. It will be fun and informative to learn which resonates with you and how to apply its special strength to your life and purpose.
Will your stance be that of The Captain (Strategic Thinking)? The Archer (Executing)? The Sensei (Influencing)? The Coach (Relationship Building)? Once you identify your unique style , you can lean into its power for greater success. Let’s go on the fascinating journey of meeting strong, authentic you this year!