In: Leading Yourself

I said this phrase to three different people today. I’m on a content fast right now and it’s killing me. However, this morning I broke it because I was curious about what the internet had to say about leading yourself. And there’s a lot of stuff out there. Some of it is decent. Mostly crap.

Who are these “authorities” on the business of being you?!?

**as I sheepishly look in the mirror**

Personally, I get annoyed by any insinuation of “you should be doing this”. I realize I do this to a certain degree.

I annoy myself.

The concept of leading yourself when it’s first introduced to us. Is quite foreign and ambiguous. I’m guilty of using these phrases because they speak to executives. But here? In my online home? I can say whatever I want.

And I will.

Leading yourself is defined by YOU. It means being at the CAUSE of every part of your life instead of the EFFECT.

Being reactive vs proactive. Living on purpose and with a purpose. By design. And it can change and evolve as you grow, develop yourself and gather more information. This is the part no one tells us.

Unfortunately, as we get older we become risk averse. Fear takes over. Responsibilities consume us. We get comfortable. Complacent. Unsure of what to do with the nagging desires and dreams in the back of our mind. As a result, we go through the motions of life and lose sight of what it means to be the author of our story.

This is something we cover in my group coaching program.

I’m crazy enough to believe if you learn how to lead yourself, be the best version of yourself, deliberately, by choice, and not by default.  If you become an active participant in defining your leadership brand/style, then and only then can you lead others. Once you realize you have a CHOICE in how you communicate, how you show up, and how you react to your circumstances things begin to shift. It all begins with your ability to lead yourself.

Have you ever been on a flight? Before your flight takes off there’s a safety video. What do you remember from the video?

Put your own mask on BEFORE you help others.

Leadership? It’s the same. If you are reading this, you are privileged enough to indulge in thinking this way. How are you honoring this privilege? Are you living your dream life? Are you giddy at the thought of going back to work at the end of a holiday weekend? Are you making a positive impact on others with your existence?

Or do you want to punch me for asking these ridiculous questions?

Good. That means you have a pulse.

When we have more people step into this way of living and being, they end up making an impact in their own lives, the lives of others, in their organizations, and in their communities.

THAT is where meaningful, lasting change happens. That is how we begin to shift our lives, communities and how we co-exist—ever so slightly.

Drop me a line: marlene@marleneleslie.com

 

 

Anytime a friend outside of the hospitality industry asks me if they should invest in a new restaurant or, god forbid, open their own restaurant my response is NOOOOOO!!! Go to Vegas, put your money on black. Your odds of winning are much higher. Most people don’t understand what it takes to be successful in this industry because they underestimate how much of themselves they have to give.

Success largely depends on the intangible components in hospitality–the secret sauce.

Early on in my career, I fell in love with the energy of the industry. That fleeting moment when it all comes together—the food, the service, the ambience—that moment is energizing, deeply satisfying, and intoxicating. The look on a guest’s face when you and your team have truly nailed it. Knowing that you’ve played a very small part in the creation of a memory for a perfect stranger.

That satisfaction is intangible.

As I progressed in my career I got further and further away from those moments. I started working for myself and rediscovered what I love so much about the hospitality industry. It’s always been about making an impact and the people.

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If you have been following the meditation trend or have a strong meditation practice, I didn’t share anything in my previous post that you don’t already know. In this post, I hope I can offer you some information that might be useful.

Part of my experimentation with different meditation practices led me down a path of discovery to understand the long-term benefits of meditation on the brain. I’ve always been obsessed with how the mind works and ways I could elevate my thinking.

Shortly after I returned from my 6 month trip around the world & mini-silent meditation retreat, I was invited to go on another meditation retreat hosted by a former monk & currently a Hindu priest, Dandapani Vedic Odyssey. D and I were introduced by a mutual friend whom I adore (thanks Robert Marchetti!). D is one of those guys who is relatable, down to earth, humble, funny and simply brilliant!

Dandapani’s approach to meditation was unique. He eases you into meditation by explaining his philosophy of having a meeting with your energy and meditating with a purpose. Very practical. His teachings start with learning how to concentrate, assuming you already understand how your mind works. Before you can meditate you must learn how to concentrate. What really struck me was the simplicity of this idea and how we, the human race, desperately need to learn how to concentrate.

Were you taught how to concentrate in school? Were you taught how to think? Were you taught how to use your mind so that it serves you?

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I was reflecting this morning on what perfectionism has cost me.

And the list is staggering.

The funny thing about this elusive idea of perfect is it’s based on rules I’ve set for myself. Anytime someone else has given me a set of rules to play by I have broken them. Time and time again. Not because I’m above them or because I think I’m better. I just don’t care for rules and the “we’ve always done it that way” mentality.

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