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cultivate reslience

Fearful? 6 Ways a Leader Can Cultivate Resilience

cultivating reslienceNo one is immune to fear. Regardless of status, title, or salary, fear does not discriminate. Whether it’s the fear of failure, the fear of making the wrong decision, the fear of the unknown, or the fear of letting down those who depend on us, it’s a not-so-friendly companion. How we respond to that fear can make all the difference in our effectiveness as leaders.

Acknowledging the fear, rather than avoiding it, is a hallmark of strong leadership. It seems counterintuitive that courage would show up in acknowledging fear. Instead of letting fear paralyze us, we can use it as a tool for growth and self-awareness. Here are six ways this shows up in leadership.

1. Acknowledge and Accept
The first step in dealing with fear is to acknowledge its presence. Pretending it doesn’t exist or pushing it aside only gives it more power. As leaders, we must be willing to confront our fears head-on and accept them as a natural part of the human experience while refusing to let them be all-consuming.

2. Cultivate Mindfulness
Mindfulness techniques, such as meditation and deep breathing exercises, can help us stay grounded in the present moment and reduce the grip that fear has on our minds. By practicing mindfulness regularly, we can develop the ability to observe our thoughts and emotions without getting swept away by them. Forbes wrote a great article about the Pomodoro Technique here, which describes taking mini breaks to practice mindfulness throughout the day.

3. Seek Support
Leadership can be an isolating position, but we don’t have to face our fears alone. Seeking support from mentors, peers, or professional coaches can provide valuable perspective and encouragement. Surrounding ourselves with a supportive network can help us feel more confident and capable in the face of fear. Harvard Business Review shared the benefits of leaders sharing their fears here.

4. Take Action
Sometimes, the best way to deal with fear is to take action in spite of it. By setting small, achievable goals and taking proactive steps toward our objectives, we can build momentum and confidence. Each small victory serves as evidence that we are capable of overcoming obstacles, even in the face of fear.

5. Focus on Growth
Instead of viewing fear as a roadblock, we can reframe it as an opportunity for growth and learning. Every challenge we face provides an opportunity to develop new skills, deepen our resilience, and become better leaders. By embracing fear as a natural part of the journey, we can harness its energy to propel us forward.

6. Lead by Example
As leaders, our behavior sets the tone for those we lead. By modeling courage, resilience, and vulnerability, we create an environment where others feel empowered to confront their own fears and strive for excellence. Leading by example means being willing to share our own struggles and setbacks, as well as our triumphs, in order to inspire and uplift those around us.

Remember, fear is not the enemy but an inevitable part of the human experience.

By embracing fear with courage and resilience, we can transform it from a hindrance into a catalyst for growth and excellence. As leaders, let’s rise to the challenge and cultivate a culture of fearlessness, innovation, and possibility in ourselves and those we lead.

Learn more about Melissa and Royal Coaching Colorado here.