If you read my previous blog, you know that I am working on self-care; this includes reflecting on my own perception of things. While cleaning out my documents folder on my computer, I stumbled across my application for Challenge Detroit regarding my thoughts on Leadership. My response made me reflect on leadership and my position as a leader today. When asked, “what is a leader”. I responded with the following, “I believe that leaders are not only examples but those who leave an imprint on the world…Being a leader, you must expose yourself to being vulnerable and allowing others to see you overcome barriers”
Leadership requires compassion, courage, confidence, awareness of others value and integrity. For a long time, I have struggled with the idea of being a leader because it makes me uncomfortable. I was uncomfortable with the attention. Being a leader is about developing yourself and the characteristics that others seek value in. A leader provides guidance and support for those who need it.
Leaders reflect on their past decisions that may impact others in order to adjust in the future. My boss Michael Montri says, ” There is a fine line between reflection and keeping your eyes focused on the future, or “out of the windshield” instead of the “the rearview mirror”. Instead of being stuck on what did not work, a leader adjusts to what can be transformed. The same way that self-care ask you to take a lead within and adjust. Leaders, look within themselves, in others and in their environments and make adjustments compassionately, empathetically and mindfully.
Leaders use reflection as a tool to develop over time. Reflection by definition is an instant of reflecting (image) or consideration of some subject matter, idea, or purpose. Whether you are looking yourself in the mirror and reflecting on a physical characteristic or reflecting on a statement, purpose or idea that was mentioned you are adjusting or transforming.
In many professions such as education, therapy or medical, professionals are using reflection throughout the day to adjust their practice for their students, clients, and patients. As someone who practiced clinical therapy, I often spoke to clients and adjusted at every moment with the client to meet their needs and understand them as individuals. While I may not be the leading expert in therapy. Most of the children I worked with, looked at me as a leader in their lives. In this position as a leader, I use self-reflection to understand my emotions and my needs. Self-reflection helps me “refill my cup so that I can continue to pour into others”.
Leadership and Reflection balance each other out in order to meet the needs of not only yourself but the community and individual.