How to Inspire Motivation
Since this issue of Executive Travel focuses on insiders, I thought we’d spend a few minutes talking about someone you are truly “in” with—someone who may have let you down once or twice, but with whom you have a lifelong relationship that has grown and changed, and who has made you who you are. Who is it? You.
How do you take steps to develop a better “insider” relationship with yourself? Dr. Kristen Kenefick, a professor and instructor on leadership and management at the Adler School of Psychology—and a former executive—says, “Take time once a day to check in with yourself. Ask yourself, ‘How am I feeling emotionally, physically and mentally? Is there something I can do that would help me to be more satisfied and engaged?’”
Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More than IQ and coauthor of Primal Leadership: Realizing the Power of Emotional Intelligence, says that self-knowledge is the cornerstone of all emotional intelligence. It’s those executives who know themselves who are the most successful with social relationships, management and leadership.
Another great way to develop self-awareness is to ask for feedback from others, then take the time to think about what you relate to, what your blind spots might be and what you might work on to become your best—and be perceived that way. Self-awareness also leads to self-confidence, as you begin to accurately perceive your assets, strengths and areas that could use development.
Finally, wise reader, take a moment right now to set aside your work and congratulate yourself on a long, healthy, happy collaborative relationship—with yourself.
Self-awareness Leads to Self-confidence
Why is it so important as an executive to trust yourself, take care of your own interests and check in with your own needs? Here are five reasons:
1. Who knows what you need better than you do? Once you are clear about your own motivators, drivers, needs and desires, you have the power to act on them.
2. When you are clear about your own strengths, not only can you use them more consciously and readily, but can also toot your own horn when necessary.
3. Executives who take the time to ask themselves questions about the best course of action make better decisions.
4. You’re only good at work when you’re personally healthy.
5. The quality of your life depends on it: Those of us who take time to reflect, take care of ourselves and think about what impact we want to have on the world are more fulfilled than those who do not.
KARLIN SLOAN, M.A., is founder and president of Karlin Sloan & Co. (karlinsloan.com), based in New York City and Chicago, which provides executive coaching, team building and leadership development services. Email Karlin at firstname.lastname@example.org.