Leadership Between the Lines

Dare to be PRESENT - or What's the Point?

Have you ever had any of these experiences?

~ You drive home from work and then don't remember how you got there.

~ You sit through a meeting and can't account for what happened in the meeting, the outcome or the details.

~ You read a book to your child or grandchild and can't recall what the book was about.

~ You workout and have so much mind chatter that you're not even sure what muscles you were working.

~ You have a conversation with a colleague and miss the important undercurrents of that conversation because you're mind was elsewhere.

~ You give a presentation but miss the impact you're having on the audience because you're too busy wondering "how am I doing?" ~ You have an argument, but you're so busy proving your point, you miss the others' point completely AND an opportunity for alignment.

~ You go home at night and spend time with your family, only to think about everything that happened at work today and what's happening tomorrow.

Sound familiar? Perhaps the better question, instead of "have you ever experienced any of these?" is: "Have you experienced any of these things today?"

We're talking about presence here. Being PRESENT is defined as "existing or being in the time occurring NOW."

There are several kinds of presence I work with clients on: There's "Leader's Presence", "Emotional and Mental Presence", and "Physical Presence." All three are essential to pay attention to in order to be aware of your impact, create intentional impact, and basically be present to your life. Because if you're not present to your life, what is the point? Truly. Think about that. IF YOU ARE NOT PRESENT TO YOUR LIFE - WHAT IS THE POINT?

We're given the beautiful gift of life, relationships, family, work we can love, health, emotions, the ability to make an impact, and so much more. We can go through our days with our minds in other places, missing all the beautiful gifts of the moment, wishing we were an hour ahead, a day ahead, a week ahead, etc. - basically somewhere other than where we are NOW. Or we can go through our lives, each day, conscious of each moment - easy or hard, stressful or peaceful, mundane or exhilarating.

When we are fully present, we experience LIFE. We can see more clearly what has to happen. We can see the truth about the moment. We can see the truth about our impact. We can fully feel our feelings: joy, anger, sadness, excitement, etc. - we are present.

It is from this place that life happens. It is in this place we actually can find authentic emotions and ultimately peace in the moment. It is in this place that we can better identify, as a leader in our lives, what needs to happen next.

FIELD WORK CHALLENGE: This month, notice when you're present in the moment and when you're not. Find it challenging to stay present 100% of the time? Most of us do. So no big deal, just notice the impact. What do you miss out on when your mind is multi-tasking? What relationships and connections do you miss out on? What opportunities are lost? What shifts for you when you are present to your life? What do you realize needs to be "cleaned up" when you are present? What shifts when you walk through your day fully awake? Fully engaged?

When you notice you've lost presence, "recover", come back to the moment. It's actually that simple. Enjoy your month. Savor your life. DARE to fully engage.

Anese Cavanaugh is a certified coach, author and speaker and the founder of Dare To Engage, Inc., a company devoted to helping leaders become top leaders in their organizations and their lives through coaching and training. Her specialty is helping leaders build a healthier, more engaged workforce, retain their top talent, develop greater authentic engagement and create stronger personal sustainability. She holds a degree and multiple credentials in the areas of coaching, wellness, leadership development and health & productivity improvement. For more about Anese or the Dare To Engage Programs or to receive a complimentary report and audio on "Energy & Results" go to www.DareToEngage.com.