Three Energy Paradigms that Influence Leadership
Have you seen those people, who walk into a room, and all heads turn?
We might not know who they are or what they do. But they are magnetic.
It isn’t particularly because of their nose-to-mouth ratio, colour or shape. They could defy stereotypes, yet be incredibly captivating. It isn’t particularly their dressing either. Of course, grooming matters. But there are those people, who could walk into a room in faded jeans and an old tee, but still have a command – they radiate power and authority, their laughter rings deep, their eyes enchant, their presence engulfs you, their conviction wins you. They awe and inspire. They may speak less, but when they do, you hang on to every word.
Their energy. Their aura. Their vibe.
LEADERSHIP IS A FORCEFIELD OF ENERGY THAT PEOPLE SENSE AROUND YOU, AND GRAVITATE TOWARDS. YOUR ENERGY INTRODUCES YOU BEFORE YOU EVEN SPEAK. AND SUCH ENERGY CANNOT BE FAKED.
External paraphernalia is just an added bonus for such people. They dress and present themselves from their own sense of power, with their own rules and quirks, and that adds to their energy instead of straitjacketing them. They are effortlessly winsome in any situation- not from outer settings but from inner personal power.
And there are those, in whose presence you feel low for no reason. They may hold authority, but, if they are overstressed, tired, ‘hangry’, sick and neurotic [remember some of your managers over your career :) ] – it is rather difficult for them to inspire & lead. You feel drained in their vicinity, and it is no joy to work with them!
SO HOW DO YOU BUILD SUPERNOVA ENERGIES THAT CHARGE YOUR LEADERSHIP?
A healthy mind is never the same without a healthy body, and vice versa.
Energy-work begins at the physical level and extends to mental, emotional and spiritual realms.
1) PHYSICAL ENERGY:
Eating clean and working out recycles your physical energy.
Think of Narendra Modi. Why does he make time for yoga every day? What kind of mind-body energy does he possess to have accomplished what he has? Think of every other exemplary achiever in any field– Obama, Michelle Obama, Richard Branson, Bill Gates, Mike Bloomberg, Arianna Huffington, Serena Williams, Mark Cuban, Gwenyth Paltrow, Kiran Bedi etc. Each one of them prioritizes wellness. Each one makes space for fitness, nutrition and a mental health routine every single day. When such people, with double-packed schedules, family responsibilities and relentless demands on themselves – can make time for wellness – why should anyone else sing the all-famous ‘I don’t have time’ song? Leaders are into wellness for a reason – without it, they would have no energy, passion or personal power to go after their vision.
Also, it is not their wealth which gives them the resources to workout. Instead, it is their fitness and wellness routines which generate their energy to earn their wealth. We all have easy access to the kind of routines they follow – be it walking, sports, gyms, yoga, dancing or even home workouts.
a) Physical movement (any fitness modality that you enjoy) literally drives out the negative energies stored in your aura and clogged in your body.
b) Shifts your attitude- Exercise rewires your mind, body and spirit for grit, endurance, strength and resilience– the drive to push past challenges and hit the finish line – all crucial traits for leadership success. It also builds agility, flexibility and the self-knowledge required to know when to rest and recover.
c) It enhances neural pathways, improves blood flow to the brain – making you more creative and also harnessing your memory and analytical skills better.
d) Natural, nutrition-rich food along with exercise clears lethargy and brain-fog, supporting mental clarity and peak performance. They also ease aches and pains in the body, helping heal at all levels.
e) Better metabolism gives you the energy needed to not only survive the day, but to finish it with a sparkle and have some more left for your personal life and hobbies. We have all heard about the happy hormones that exercise releases!
f) Body-Intelligence- Your body is intuitive. It can tip you off when you are about to make a wrong decision. The more you tune in to your body, the more familiar you get with your gut feelings, which will never fail to point you in the right direction.
2) Mental & Emotional Energy
Have you ever noticed how stress ends up giving you a headache or stiff shoulder? Do you remember those children who suffer from loose bowels just before every exam [were you one of them by any chance :) ]? That’s the mind-body connection. An hour of intense stress is said to cause the same tissue damage as smoking 3-4 cigarettes (ACSM stats). And losing sleep equates to even more damage. In addition to fitness and eating clean foods, which best leverage the mind-body connection to heal and strengthen your energies, here are some more tools for your mental and emotional health:
a) Know thy self and cultivate self-worth– the greatest truth presented in every religious, spiritual and scientific work on psychology. You are a being with very specific likes and dislikes. Tune into your heart to know where best you can serve society, how best you can create an impact. Say YES to experiences that resonate with you, and say NO to everything done out obligation or for superficial external validation. The mark of a true leader is knowing his passion which energizes him from within, differentiating him in this world of parrots and clones.
b) Journalling – helps you organize your thoughts, solidify your goals, process emotions, identify irrational fears and reset your thought-process. It helps you realize what gave you satisfaction each day and register gratitude, notice what didn’t work so that you consciously learn and redesign your life.
c) Self-exploration & self-expression – Any form of art helps release creative energies and connect you to your better self. Be it poetry, music, dance, acting, painting or any other art form – it will help you emote and grow.
d) NLP (Neuro-linguistic programming) & EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique)- These are scientific practices that help you directly address mental or emotional trauma, work through limiting beliefs and recreate yourself.
e) Heal your relationships and speak your heart – Pull the thorn out of your foot, have that difficult conversation, tackle that nagging issue, reconnect with loved ones, ask for what you need, get rid of toxic people, make time each week to meet new people, create family rituals for bonding, wish your friends for their birthdays (hello Facebook – thank you for that notification!). There is nothing that drains your energy as much as negligent relationships.
f) Nourish your mind with positive inputs- Enough of watching that gossip-show on TV! Enough of worrying yourself sick with all the negative news blaggard you from every direction. Spend time each day instead to feed your mind with positivity and constructive learning. The seeds of thought you plant in your brain grow into gigantic trees of subconscious action that can make or break your energy.
g) Integrity- Maintain your values and ethics for strong, vibrant energies emanating from the deepest level.
h) Affirmations and Visualization- Strengthen your intentions for life, motivate you both consciously as well as sub-consciously, and draw success towards you faster.
3) Spiritual Energy
This is for those of you who strongly believe that there’s something larger than us out there in the universe – a larger intelligence – a loving, supportive one which weaves all things together - a sense of connection to your soul, spirit, the divine, or the cosmos, call it what you will- gives us a sense of purpose and direction. It renews our hope. And plugs us into gigantic energies which transmute our relationship to life.
a) Meditation- the spiritual and scientific energy tonic. It helps you not only to calm and collect yourself, but also access the less-understood parts of your brain to reveal astonishing intuitive spiritual guidance.
b) Energy Medicine – Ancient practices such as Pranic Healing, Reiki from Traditional Chinese Medicine, Acupressure or acupuncture, and once again movement therapies like yoga or Tai Chi – specifically balance your yin and yang – harmonize your need to work hard with your need to rest, your ability to give (love, charity, magnanimity, value through your work etc.) with your ability to receive (Yes. If you are a giver and don’t know how to receive – be it love, gratitude, the gifts of the universe, praise etc. - you are missing out on life). Energy medicine also clears all energy blocks in the body, which are often the root cause of disease (recall the mind-body connection). When energy flows freely, you are more radiant, healthy, happy and successful – an authentic leader.
c) Prayer- Your way of talking to God and handing over your worries to a higher power with faith. Prayer has scientifically been proven to produce great stress-release, healing and confidence.
d) Chanting- Whether it is a mantra you want to repeat or an affirmation, chanting is proven to clear your bio-electric field (scientific term for aura) and improve your vibes.
e) Contemplate Nature- To plug into higher energies
f) Kindness & Philanthropy – Whether you are a believer in karma or not, magnanimity also is proven to improve happiness