“The mightiest of all warriors is he who can conquer himself.”
Authentic leadership comes from within, leading from the heart, genuinely, with passion and purpose. It requires a high level of self-awareness, self-knowledge, compassion, empathy and understanding. Authentic leaders serve others with the highest degree of integrity and vision. They do not demand compliance and respect; rather, they demonstrate it. They give recognition and acknowledge the skills, talents and contributions of others.
Becoming an Authentic Leader
To lead others, you must first learn to lead yourself. You cannot choose to be a leader; others decide if you will lead them. However, to become an authentic leader, you must first identify, define, align and live into your values. You must master your emotions by clearly identifying and understanding how to psychologically stabilize them and be willing to accept change.
Becoming an authentic leader means facing your “blind spots” with courage and vulnerability. You must examine those unconscious habits that bring forth negative behavioral traits and weaknesses and prevent you from having harmonious relationships, understanding your purpose, and obtaining fulfillment, contentment and joy.
The Areas You Must Master To Become An Authentic Leader Are:
Create a level of self-awareness to overcome your negative emotions, pride, ego, moods and feeling
Be in integrity with your thoughts, words and actions
Listen compassionately, being attentive, respectful, open and receptive to others thoughts and points of view and accepting them as being equally valid as your own
Not take things personally, nor make assumptions
Be detached from the outcom
Accept your own humanness
The Hallmarks of an Authentic Leader
To be an authentic leader you must be all things — sometimes confident, sometimes humble, sometimes bold, sometimes silent, and at all times aware of how your leadership affects those around you and the world.
Authentic leaders have vision and evaluate things with the higher good for all in mind. They trust themselves and others. They feel and express gratitude. True leadership is not a job or a profession. It is born of a deep essence, a rare calling from within, one that takes unrelenting vision, exploration, and self-examination
For more on Authentic Leadership, see “50 Ways to Improve your Authenticity Quotient.”