First a quote; “We learn geology the morning after the earthquake.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Good morning and happy Monday. I hope this morning missive finds you and yours both safe and healthy.
I appreciate the quote above, penned by Ralph Waldo Emerson, and believe it has so much application for the times we live in today. We have so much to learn about, and from, this pandemic, as individuals, as a society, and as a global population. Just look at what we have already learned in a few short months. Now imagine how much we have yet to learn. Earthquakes and pandemics have much in common when it comes to what, and how, we learn about major events.
Of course, there is the science of viruses, antibodies, biology, and epidemiology. How about the entire universe of knowledge to be gained, relating to human behavior, on full display in almost every grocery store, news stories, and throughout social media posts of all types?
If you are a student of leadership behavior, you can see lessons to be learned, both good and bad, almost everywhere you look. Truly, the University of COVID-19 is now open for willing and curious students. The teachers are everywhere, as are the lessons to be learned. And the cool thing is, for the most part, tuition is free. Only awareness, thoughtful observation, and sometimes self-reflection are all that is required.
As a student of emotional intelligence, I have been reflecting upon my own emotional journey through the early phases of this pandemic. In a recent webinar I gave entitled “How Are You?” I described the “roller coaster ride” of up and down emotions I have experienced. Many participants shared they had been experiencing a similar ride… slow climbs, rapid descents, wild and sharp curves, often scary, people screaming, occasionally exhilarating, almost everyone anxiously waiting for the ride to come to an end. We all want the ride to end. I am guessing you can relate to at least some of this same emotional roller coaster experience. We are, after all, human. We are emotional creatures.
Emotional intelligence, as I understand and teach the subject, is about self-awareness and self-management, on one side of the coin, and other-awareness and social influence on the other side of the coin.
Emotional intelligence seems to be most obvious by its absence in other people. It is easy for us to see other people having an “emotional meltdown” and recognize their EQ deficiency. It is less obvious, and more difficult, to see similar deficiencies in ourselves. My deficiency showed up this past week, alive and well.
Unfortunately, I let pent up emotions erupt this past week, for which I am very embarrassed. I lost my temper with a well-intentioned colleague. While in my mind, at the time, my emotions, tone, and harsh words were justified, I know that is not the case. I was angry and wanted the world to do something about MY emotions. I know what I have always known, emotions happen! I have learned to say, “While I can’t help the way I feel right now, I can control the way I respond, think, and act.” I may have a bit more work to do. Click on this link to learn more:
Click here to read: You Make Me So Angry
We all have a lot of “stuff” going on in our lives right now, none of us are exempt. In my case, our family experienced the COVID-19 death of the mother of a close family friend, we’re concerned about the health of our elderly parents, our daughter is one of the 30 million unemployed Americans, one of my sisters is a nurse battling near the front lines in the DFW area. I have a brother struggling to keep the doors of his restaurant from closing for good. I personally lost almost six months of revenue and projects in the first few days of the shutdown and that is likely to be extended. My small business was “too small” to qualify for the disaster relief funds, at least for now.
While feeling angry might feel good in the short term, it does nothing to make the situation better, only worse for all involved.
We all have a lot of “stuff” happening in our lives right now. I know I am not the only one experiencing difficult times, and yet compared to so many, our family has so much to be grateful for. I suggest the question posed by Franz Kafka merits our consideration in this coming week.
know of the griefs that are in me and what do I know of yours?”
— FRANZ KAFKA
Let us be kind to ourselves this week. Let us also be kind to others. We can never fully appreciate the pain of another human being, but we can be patient, kind, and understanding of each other.
How will you live, or lead, better or differently this coming week? I know I have an apology call to make this week.
Everyone can make a difference, and everyone should try. Be your best self this week.
Have a great week. Stay safe. Be well. Wash your hands. Keep your distance. Keep pedaling!
Free 30-Minute Webinar Announcement Below; “No Land in Sight Change Leadership Skills for Work & Life”
“Expanding Your Capacity for Success”
Do you know someone who might benefit from this weekly leadership minute? If so, please feel free to pass along the subscription link below:
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- “For every minute you remain angry, you give up sixty seconds of peace of mind.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
- “If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow.” – Chinese Proverb
- “Be careful with your words. Once they are said, they can only be forgiven, not forgotten.” – Carl Sandburg
- “Speak when you’re angry and you’ll make the best speech you’ll ever regret.” – unknown
- “If it won’t matter in 5 years, don’t spend more than 5 minutes getting angry about it.” – unknown
“No Land in Sight” focuses on four primary leadership responsibilities in times of change. The ideas are simple, practical and actionable, not theoretical or academic. Everyone regardless of position or level will benefit from this message. This presentation is ideal for people who have the responsibility or opportunity to lead others through change of any kind. This has been one of my most popular presentations over the years. Certainly, appropriate now.
Registration for each event is required – Links for each date below. Limited to the first 100 participants.
Part 2 – Monday, May 4 at 1:58
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