The following is an AI transcript, so please ignore any errors.
Hello and welcome to this episode of the blue pea leader. And I want to share with you how you can navigate uncertainty, with style. Well, at least with a resource that will ensure you come through this stronger.
Because in high uncertainty. People are looking to be led by you, by the media, by the government and emotions are running high.
There’s still a lot of anxiety and fear. And this leads to your thoughts being all over the place. Which, to be fair isn’t all that helpful, especially if it’s happening to you, and at the same time you’re trying to lead or comfort, your team, who are experiencing the same.
But there is a secret to navigating uncertainty, and it’s counter to what we’ve been trained to do. Because at the end of the day, it’s never about the obstacles. What it is is about how you respond to them.
Now, I recently asked some of my clients question, which is, who do you want to be as you come through, what we’re going through.
And when they thought about answering the question. Basically, it’s, it’s not the easiest question to answer you don’t get that instant Oh, here we go. It’s what I call a quality question a quality question will bring up a quality answer. And in essence by pondering this question. It’s in your deciding who you want to be when you come through this and that, actually shapes your future.
Now, if you’re just trying to get through this. Like, just try to sort of get through this. Then you’re going to come out the other side smaller, feeling battered bruised, with not an awful lot to show for it. And your thoughts and your feelings will be all over the place.
There’s something that I remember a mentor of mine said many years ago. So the exact words were Ruth, you can’t lead people through territory you’ve never been through.
And over time, I actually realised the merit in what was said. In fact, I was chatting to a client, the other day who said to me you know how on earth you’re managing stay so positive I’m energised talking to you.
And of course, you know, the short answer would be, I’ve been here before. And I don’t mean a pandemic because I haven’t. But I’ve had my world turned upside down, and inside out on several occasions. And I’ve been sat there, looking backwards, pining, and looking forwards going blankety blank. And in the middle of it going what on earth.
So, firstly, let’s look at emotions. The number one, being anxiety. Now anxiety, is your imagination in action. But it’s in action badly. Now imagination is great, but you just have to learn to use it properly and anxiety is you imagining that something bad is going to happen in the future. So, I guess this is a bit of tough love. It’s when you’re imagining things not working out. And I don’t mean from a risk assessment point of view, you’re effectively saying you’ve lost confidence.
As a leader. It is totally okay to say, I’ve got no idea what the future is going to look like. Exactly. and it will be bumpy as we get there. But you also need to convey that you’re confident, and that you and the team will make it, and that the future will be good because it will be.
Now our brains are wired to react more to threats than rewards. So what we have to do as leaders is minimise the threats as best we can, and maximise the rewards.
And let’s face it, if we look. Some of these threats are actually imaginary. We need to identify those and put them in perspective, or get rid of them. We’ve entered a global change with no apparent future. And we kind of view, a change as a threat something like this, which is huge, is understandably disorientated.
And there are things we can do, which actually help the brain operate more effectively and make some small results for the resilience. And when we do this for our team. It has the same effect for them.
Now firstly we like certainty. The more variables that there are, the more our brain goes into a kind of process overdrive. And then we start to hesitate and procrastinate, and eventually give up. Now certainty is also linked confidence. If I’m not sure about how to do something. But I’m confident that I will be able to do it and come through this. Then I’ll move forward. But if I’m not sure how to do something and I don’t actually believe that it’s possible for me to do it. Then I’m going to give up.
So ask yourself where in your life, can you increase certainty, or make things more predictable?
And I’m going to give you a couple of areas that you might want to consider. Because routine actually is a great asset, you know, if we know that we’re getting up at the same time if we know it. Sometimes when it’s, so flux, know that little bit of routine that little bit of certainty, can be a great asset.
So routine of any nature is a great asset, but also keeping our promises both to ourselves and to other people. Again, if we keep our promise. We are. And there is a certainty in that. And there is, and then ultimately there’s a predictability in it. And that will increase the connections you have with others, and also build trust.
Now, the second thing your brain likes is freedom. And the more uncertain things are then sometimes our desire or our way of having freedom actually shifts. So what can help here is to have clear boundaries and clear expectations, because these actually help us feel safe. You know, as long as I operate within the boundary, I have the freedom as to how to do it so there is some freedom. But I have a clarity within which I can then move around. If I have too much freedom without any of this, then I can become disorientated and paralysed.
Now, every one of us has their, what you might call freedom quota. And at the beginning of this year. You may have liked a lot, you may have liked you will have had the amount that you wanted and the same for the people in your team you will know the people who want lots of freedom, you’ll know the people who naturally want a little less freedom.
But here’s the thing, right now, even those people at the beginning of the year who wanted lots of freedom. They may actually appreciate being given more guidance, or even instruction. And of course, the only way you’re going to know this is to ask.
Because when we’re anxious and we’re overwhelmed, it actually blocks our creativity and creativity is key.
Right. So what feedback can you give to your team members that rewards that efforts and increases their self confidence.?
Now, at the beginning, I posed the question. Who do you want to be at the other side of this, well how does that question help us. Well, it helps for your certainty your confidence and freedom but it does this at a much deeper level, your brain actually loves this question, it is resourceful.
And notice the question is Who do you want to be. Not what do you want to do that will come later.
So, make a decision as to who you want to be. Be bold, be brave, because then it makes the journey that you’re on worthwhile. If you’re playing it small playing it safe. The game is basically gonna get beat up for nothing. So, when you got your answer. Now you can use external events correctly, as fuel.
I said earlier, it’s never about the obstacles, it’s about how you will overcome them. And when you don’t know who you are, you actually feel at the mercy of events. But when you’ve decided who you will become more of, then you’re inspired.
See the fact is, you are always in charge of who you are being in any given moment. And that is true freedom. It’s also certainty, because who you are being in any given moment is shaping your future one brick at a time.
Now, very soon. We’re going to be asked to create visions for the future and the plan to do it. So who am I being. And who am I, becoming of the foundations of the success of any vision you come up with. Without this, it’s going to be rockier than it actually needs to be. You’ll possibly also struggle with your motivation and staying resilient.
I have to say that if ever there was a good time to have a coach and a mentor. This is it. Because the return on investment will be huge, and lasts a lifetime fact, I’ve got clients that have come on board with me in the last few months. And, you know, they are, they are already seeing massive rewards benefits from their investment in themselves, their ability to handle this, their ability to to navigate it compared to some of the other leaders that are around them. So if it is something that you’re thinking about, then please get in touch, and we can have a chat and see if it’s, see how we can help you.
I want to leave you with something that’s also helped me on many occasions. It’s a saying, I don’t know who the author is, but like I say it’s helped me.
“When you come to the end of all that, you know, you must believe in one of two things. There will be Earth, upon which to stand, or you will be given wings.”
And I just think that is such a beautiful quote that reminds me about transformation, not about change but about transformation. “there will be Earth upon which to stand or you will be given wings”. In other words, when I come out of this transformation, whether it’s earth or wings, or whatever, but it’s believing that I’m going to come out of the transformation equipped to handle the future.
So until next time on the blue pea leader podcast, go and be the difference in leadership.