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How to Lead With Positive Energy (Even When Times Get Tough) This article discusses the significance of embracing positive energy in leadership, especially during challenging times such as economic recessions.

By Taja Dockendorf

Key Takeaways

  • The power of positive thinking lies in believing in one's ability to navigate and overcome challenges.
  • By leading with constructive positivity, leaders can inspire resilience, foster growth and cultivate a culture of continuous improvement.
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When the most recent "recession" hit, I didn't worry. And as it still looms, I continue to exercise the choice to not worry. Mainly because I've learned not to fear the unknown. Moving forward without fear has become second nature to me.

As a leader, brand co-owner and owner of a creative agency, I know fear is the last thing I need. Instead, I need to be proactive and aligned with this truth: That even in a time of slowing economic growth, we will continue to find space for our business. I need to unlock every single door and window, and what we need will come. It always does.

This is the power of positive energy in leadership.

Related: 8 Ways to Stay Positive Regardless of What Is Going on Around You

How to lead with positive energy

Holding positive energy as a leader is essentially about removing fear from the process. Fear blocks opportunity and isolates, while positive energy attracts on a quantum level. Both are a state of mind and a bodily response that we can affect with our choices and intentions.

When we lead with positive energy, it comes down to not leading with the assumption that there's always a problem threatening to overtake you; it's about leading knowing there is always, always a solution.

But let's be clear: This isn't about plastering fake smiles on our faces while our world crumbles around us. I've come to understand that the power of realistic positive energy doesn't come from ignoring the challenges we face. It's about acknowledging them, accepting their existence, and then choosing to respond in a way that fosters growth and development. It's about approaching them with resilience, optimism and a belief that we can overcome. It's about leading with a mindset that promotes constructive, grounded optimism — a space where acknowledging imperfections and setbacks isn't a sign of weakness, but instead an opportunity for learning and improvement.

For me, how I live and lead with the power of positive energy means understanding our journey is a continuous evolution, where each step forward, no matter how small, contributes to our growth. It means acknowledging rough patches are a natural part of life, and they can serve as stepping stones to something greater if we choose to approach them with the right mindset.

I won't sugarcoat it. Leading with this perspective isn't all rainbows and butterflies. There are moments of doubt and unforeseen challenges that can test even the most positive of attitudes. It's during these times, though, that the power of constructive positivity can really help us advance.

Related: How to Actually Be Your Most Positive Self

How to cultivate and maintain this mindset

Cultivating and keeping this mindset takes time and intention. It requires finding your own inner peace, moments of glimmer and a stable center you can come back to when things become turbulent.

Easier said than done, right? But try this: Remember a time and place when things felt easy, when they flowed, and you were content. Think back to how you felt in that moment — open, energized, happy, excited — and try to find that same feeling again. That feeling can be your base, a place of realization and understanding that opens you to positive energy flow.

For me, this process started with utilizing my own style of meditation and vibrational sound work, which included teaching myself to be in the moment and present to how I was feeling. Later, I taught myself how to meditate into sleep and hold that state. From there, I was able to deeply relax, let go and ease into this mindset in my conscious hours. What I found then was no matter what the issue, fear or concern, I had a solution and a more generative and open mindset the next morning. I entered the new day ready to move forward.

Today, I don't meditate often, but I continue to offer my body and mind deep sleep and rest. High-quality sleep continues to be a powerful energetic reset for me. It's a time when I can release what isn't helpful, let a problem's moving pieces reshuffle and reorganize, and trust the answers will come.

Related: This Simple But Effective 'Positivity Challenge' Will Completely Change Your Mindset

Questions to ask yourself

What you need to find your own stable center and lead with constructive positivity might look different. Here are some questions and tips that can help you tune in to what will help you in this journey:

  • What helps you access your intuition, allowing you to make your best choices?

  • What activities — which might include things like sleep, meditation, running or even driving — bring your best ideas and solutions forward?

  • Spend some time getting to know and understand your full capability. What strengths and personal power can you access when you go to the deepest level? In other words, what brings you an abundance of energy and excitement?

  • Unpack your mistakes, so you can learn from them and own them. Then make a conscious effort to use those failures as fuel. When it feels like something new is falling apart, don't be afraid to ask yourself: What is the worst-case scenario? And then: What essential things are still preserved, even then? Once you've made some level of peace with this possibility, ask yourself: How can I draw upon my intuition, creativity, wisdom from past experiences and full capability to avoid it and find a better solution?

In the end, the power of positive energy in leadership lies in its ability to inspire resilience, foster growth and cultivate a culture of continuous improvement. It's about recognizing that life isn't perfect, times are often hard, and there are a lot of unknowns, but our response to these imperfections shapes our journey in profound ways.

By embracing the power of positive thinking, we can navigate rough patches with grace, learn from our experiences and emerge as stronger, more empathetic leaders ready to tackle whatever challenges come our way. Because ultimately, the most powerful positivity isn't about pretending everything is alright. It's about believing that no matter what happens, we have the strength to make it through.

Taja Dockendorf

Entrepreneur Leadership Network® Contributor

Owner and Creative Director at Pulp+Wire

Founder, and creative director of Pulp+Wire a 100% female-founded and run CPG strategic brand, packaging, and digital launch agency. Taja has consulted, created, and grown over 400 brands while fostering a culture around growth, and intuitive leadership for her female-forward team.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

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