Wednesday, October 24

Living Loving Leaders

If you have been reading my blogs, you know that I have a deep love for words. I especially love alliterations. Words are amazing because they have the power to heal but they also have the power to do great harm. Unless I really know a person’s heart, I will look to what words they are using to determine whether or not I will develop any kind of relationship with them.

We have the tendency to throw around our words: we say things we don’t really mean; we say mean things; we speak before we fully understand; and the list can go on. The first of don Miguel Ruiz’s Four Agreements, is to be Impeccable With Your Word. This means taking the time to really think about what you are saying. Ruiz says we must speak with integrity and to say only what we mean. We must avoid using the word to speak against ourselves or to gossip about others. We must use the power of our word in the direction of truth and love.

When thinking about speaking, it is important to measure what you have to say with these three questions:

~ Does it need to be said?
~ Does it need to be said now?
~ Does it need to be said by me?

As leaders, we especially need to weigh our words and what we speak out. Our words have tremendous power, so we must be absolutely sure of what we use them for. Leaders must use words to encourage and to edify. It is easy to focus on what someone has done inappropriately or incorrectly, and to criticize and complain. Yet, how often do we catch someone doing something right, in order to encourage and edify. So be impeccable with your word.

Enough said!

To lead is to serve,
Coach Carolyn

Tuesday, October 16

Equip and Empower Moment: Being Transparent

As a leader, do you find it difficult to express your true feelings to those you lead? Do you find it difficult to be vulnerable around your peers and those who report to you?

Authentic leaders are able to balance transparency with being an example. They have the ability to express their fears, stresses and anxieties to those they lead. Like anything else, it is about balance. We as humans are not called to be all one way or all another; but to maintain and demonstrate healthy balance.

Leaders who are all stoicism, rigidity and stiff upper lip, will eventually be seem as unfeeling and lacking empathy. Yet, a leader who is too soft with no sense of limits will lose his or her leadership status very soon. Having a healthy balance is, in this case, being able to exhibit empathy but also being firm and holding people accountable.

When in doubt, all leaders must have a mentor they can turn to – a nutritious person in his or her life to bounce ideas off, to share fearful and anxious moments with, and to get a fresh perspective on things. We are called to be relational people; no one should have to go it alone. Leadership is also about building relationships.

So cultivate a relationship with a trusted person who will give you and your leadership the kind of feedback necessary for you to maintain healthy balance emotionally, physically, intellectually, and spiritually.

To lead is to serve,
Coach Carolyn

Wednesday, October 10

Leadership and the Pink Collar Club

I am honored and very blessed to have been chosen as the Leadership Coach and Expert on the Executive Board of the Pink Collar Club – an online Christian lifestyle community for women designed to engage them in discovering and implementing God's unique purpose for their life and His Kingdom. Not only is this a great honor, but I get to be a blessing in the lives of the women of the Pink Collar Club; an awesome responsibility.

I have had some amazing e-chats as well as real life chats with PCC Founder and Life Purpose Coach Randee Krumwiede. A loving, gentle, yet powerful woman of God, Randee has been friend, mother, soul sister, and servant leader to all members of PCC. I am one of fourteen members of the Executive Board and so far it has been a divine experience.

So what do I do as Leadership Coach? I write a monthly mentoring article, post weekly topics in our online forum, share with, pray for, encourage, and create a divine presence for all the women of PCC. This experience has been an answer to a prayer of service. How do I live out the servant leadership model that I teach, coach and consult about? The Pink Collar Club is one very special way.

In addition to Randee and myself, our sisters in service will help in the areas of Career, Marriage, Financial Fitness, Stay-At-Home Moms, Creativity, Natural Living, Work-At-Home Moms, Image, Bible Study, Health & Beauty, Spiritual Health, and Technology. We offer teleclasses, book clubs, free resources, chick chats and the awesome Path to Purpose e-course, as well as the What if…? Women Blog – just to mention a few.

Membership is $52/year. That’s a mere dollar a week to receive the grace, blessings and impacting wisdom of this divinely illustrious group of women. Not only will you receive blessings yourself as a member, but your membership dollars help support other ministries and missions which help to build up God’s mighty Kingdom. And guys, invite your wives, mothers, sisters, daughters, and all the women you connect with to connect with this community of women.

While we are spiritual beings having this human experience, why not enhance that experience by acting in the service of women around the globe? Give blessings by being a blessing. When I am asked why I look and act so peaceful; my response is threefold: I honor and serve a gentle and loving God; I give in loving service; and I connect with divinely nutritious people. I am here to tell you, I have received much more than I have given. And that’s the way it works in God’s economy.

Check out the Pink Collar Club and be divinely inspired…

To lead is to serve,
Coach Carolyn

Friday, October 5

A Leader’s Call to Forgive

I was blessed this past week to give a talk on Servant Leadership to a class of seminarians who already or are becoming pastors and leaders. I spoke on Servant Leadership using Paul’s “Love Letter” to the church in Corinth. It was definitely a lively and engaging discussion. Thanks to Dr. Robert Zuber for the invitation.

When we came to the principle in Paul’s Letter on forgiveness, well, there we remained for the rest of the session. This is a very touchy issue for many and a sticking point for most, especially those who are in leadership positions. So I wanted to share a few ideas on forgiveness here as it does pertain to being an effective leader.

I conduct a workshop for women called Forgiveness: The Real F Word. It is a popular workshop and a very emotional topic. Wikipedia defines forgiveness as the mental, and/or spiritual process of ceasing to feel resentment, indignation or anger against another person for a perceived offense, difference or mistake, or ceasing to demand punishment or restitution.

I think the sticking point for many is that forgiving goes hand in hand with forgetting. Well, this simply is not the case. No where in that definition does it speak of forgetting or condoning, for that matter. Our brains are not wired that way. We cannot simply choose to forget an offense or a harm done to us. We can choose to spiritually forget. By that I mean we can choose to not bring up the offense once we have dealt with it. And here, we can deal with it personally or spiritually; especially if the person is no longer living.

When we choose to forgive, we make the conscious choice to set aside feelings of resentment and to not hold onto records of the wrongs. Allowing the offense to come up again and again and again, there is very little chance of setting aside any resentment.

To make this easier, remember a few points:

When someone has wronged me, the chances are great that they did not do it intentionally. We tend to remember the wrongs, but how many right things have they done? Focus on the positive.

When someone has wronged me, the chances are also great that I too have wronged someone inadvertently. I pray that I am forgiven and the offense is not held against me.

When someone has wronged me, the offender is not operating out of a place of love, but of fear. And the place of fear is not where the Divine has called us to be. Pray that the offender can come back into the place of love.

When you choose to forgive, you choose to let go of the burdens or pain and suffering. You choose to free yourself to give more of what you are called to give. You choose to be more loving to those we are called to lead.

I would love your thoughts on your forgiveness journey. And remember, it is a journey. It is a process. One step at a time.

To lead is to serve,
Coach Carolyn