Commitment to Self

14 Sep 2011 11:31 AM | Kathleen Loehr
After years of giving, giving, giving as a non-profit leader, I found myself drained and in self-doubt. I regularly gave up my exercise to deal with frustrated volunteers, gave up strategic planning to meet with staff members in meltdown, gave up vacation time to meet a funder’s changed proposal schedule. Any one day I would have a clear set of To Do’s, and by 30 minutes into the day I’d be pulled off center by the unexpected.
I went to as many time management seminars as any other leader, read the same books about highly effective leaders. I heard over and over the saying “Put your own oxygen mask on first”, and would nod my head.  And then BAM, the day would start, and I’d be running again – never enough time to connect to my wisdom and highest priorities as a leader.  As each day ended I’d feel the same – “I’ve not done enough to achieve the mission.”
Sound familiar?
In 2009, I found my way to a program that allowed leaders to practice together – it was only then that I broke my cycle. I was able to practice declaring and rigorously committing what I care deeply about, practice having the hard conversations and embody the moves to hold my ground, practice taking baby step after baby step to achieve my commitment. I slowly reshaped from being an anxious manager scuttling around putting out fires to being a calm, strong leader that others organized around confidently. And I was able to teach others what I was learning. Together there was more available in each of us to move the strategy forward day in and day out.
This is the same transformative experience that Heather and I have designed into The Leadership Sanctuary – to help YOU re-ignite your full leadership potential by actually practicing rigorous commitments.  Starting with your commitment to self.
The Leadership Sanctuary is about creating breakthroughs in a leader’s resilience and ability to tap into inner wisdom and calm to deal with today’s hairy challenges. The biggest leadership breakthroughs can only start with a commitment to change within yourself.  
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Next week we’ll talk about our key requirement: your commitment.

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