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Enjoy this video transcript of this week’s Monday Moment episode.

Good morning and happy Monday! I’m Monica Wofford and this is your Monday Moment, glasses and all.

We’re still in our festive spirit because wow, as leaders, we’ve been through the ringer. Today’s Monday moment is focused on just me talking to you and you leading you through the rest of this upcoming transitional process. In all seriousness, how do you lead yourself through all of this? It’s a reality that you’ve probably put on a brave face, kept up the sense of humor, and on occasion really wanted to fuss at someone and yet had to have a Zen moment, suck it in, and be calm, patient, reserved, diplomatic, and kind anyway. But, that seething, boiling, confused, panicking leader underneath that surface could maybe use a little bit of a boost and maybe a dose of confidence. That is the purpose of today’s Monday Moment. How do you lead yourself through the reality of what we’ve been through and even what we have yet to experience in the way of transition? There are three elements I would encourage you to practice and that if I were your coach, I’d give you for homework. The first of those items is to figure out what you don’t want.

What Don’t You Want?

Make a list of the don’t wants. Now, this is pretty easy to do because it’s a list comprised of your current complaints. This is all the things that bug you. The items and experiences and issues you hate. The pet peeves that drive you crazy, that you complain about, and that are minor annoyances or big massive problems. In other words, all those items that you wish you didn’t have to do, be, have or experience would go on this list. For example, you don’t want to go broke. You don’t want to stay in the same situation or same position. You don’t want to have your kids yelling at you. You don’t want to homeschool. You don’t ever want to have to figure out the new math model ever again in the future. Whatever it is that is on your list of annoyances, make a list of all these items and we’ll call it what you don’t want. The second step of the don’t want list exercise is to write down what you want instead. This is an exercise that we often provide to our executive coaching clients because it’s frequently that we will give a lot of thought to the things that bug us, or get on our nerves, tick us off, or make us angry because it’s right here, top of mind in the conscious. What we very rarely will address is what do we want instead? And yeah, I get it. A million dollars. A brand new spanking, gorgeous car. A beautiful house. Balloons. Who knows! The range is wide, but I’m encouraging you today, right here, right now, to get started on the list of what you don’t want and then proceed one by one through that list to come up with what you want instead. Until you have clarity around what you do actually want to have, do, be, feel, or experience, leading yourself to that end is difficult. Until you have clarity around what you want for your family, your relationship, your profession, your vocation, your career, your skills, your mindset, your mood, your physicality, your finances, your personal life, your tangible wants, desires, dreams or goals or ambitions, it’s difficult to point yourself in and then lead yourself rapidly in that direction. So, the first step in leading yourself, whether you’re in the midst of this transition, just starting a grand reopening, or getting a little bit bogged down, maybe even having a meltdown about all the change and feeling the pressure from the unexpected new environment, start doing your homework. What is it you don’t want? And then, part two of that assignment: What do you want instead?

Give Yourself Permission

The next method for most effectively leading yourself, whether the boat sinking and you’re rearranging the silverware on deck, or things are just changing, is to give some consideration to giving yourself permission. What are you telling yourself? No, I don’t have time for that. I don’t have the energy for that right now. I don’t have the motivation for that right now. Or It’s not worth it right now. Dieting is a great example. Some people are on the bandwagon running five miles a day because they’ve got the time right now, while other people I know want a bag of Oreos or bag of Doritos every day because they have no motivation to be running. I think I’m somewhere in between. Where are you? What is it that right now you’re not giving yourself permission to do or to pursue or to dream about accomplishing? Give yourself permission to go after what this time period allows you to pursue. Also, give yourself permission to have days where you need a Zen moment and a little quiet time. Give yourself permission to not know all the answers. Give yourself permission to seek out help or ask for help, when you might not otherwise give yourself permission to experience what right now, any reasonable human being would call confusion. And… maybe you see that clear path. Not everyone does. And I know many of our coaching clients are struggling in some areas, reeling in others, and absolutely propelling themselves in success directions in others. Now it’s your time to focus on leading yourself through getting clarity around what you want and then giving yourself permission to pursue just that.

Find Your Power

The last thing I want you to consider doing when it comes to leading yourself and increasing leader confidence, clarity or certainty, and feeling good about your own direction, is take back some of that power. You may not be in total control. You may not have all the answers. You may not know when your organization, or business, is actually going to open its doors, or if it ever will, again to customers. You may not know where you’re working. You may not know if your kids are graduating under some tent or where to pick up their cap and gown, or whether or not they’re actually going to an educational institution in the fall because you’re not sure if the buildings will be open. To take back some of your power and shift that mindset or that focus, shift your thinking. What do you know? What do you know you can handle? What have you handled thus far? What do you know you can do, accomplish, overcome, and be prepared for? Within what you do know, is where the confidence resides. What you don’t know is often where leaders end up focused, but always by conscious choice or effort. Take some of your power back by focusing on what you do know and what you can control. The answers to those questions you have and your ability to maintain what I would call the needed current level of energy will become more clear and start returning.

We have been through the ringer, but we’ve done it together and on a global scale. This hasn’t just been your state or my state or our city. We’ll get through all of it and I think, if you prepare yourself, we may even be better for it. I’m Monica Wofford and that’s your Monday Moment.

Work on leading yourself this week and hey, if you’ve received this because someone else said this might be helpful, go to MondayMoment.com and put in your own email address so that you get these weekly videos in your very own inbox. I look forward to seeing you soon. And remember, your leadership of you and of the team you have the privilege of leading is….still… contagious.

Monica Wofford, CSP is a celebrated leader who develops future leaders. CEO of Contagious Companies, her firm delivers and designs leadership training for managers who’ve been promoted, but not prepared, and the leaders who promoted them. Author of Contagious Leadership and Make Difficult People Disappear, Monica and members of the Contagious team may be reached at www.ContagiousCompanies.com, www.MonicaWofford.com or by calling 1-866-382-0121.

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