#ShowingUp with Anese Cavanaugh

Your Environment: Leadership Kryptonite or Super Power?

You come home from work, walk through your door, and feel... exhausted. You get into your car, notice the to-go coffee cup (from 3 days ago) and your kid's Cheese-Its crumbed in the back seat... agitation spikes. You walk into your office, it's dark, stuffy, messy... energy dips, resistance comes in. You go to write on the white board, and have to move through 4 pens until you find one that works... broken flow and contraction. (Bonus points, if you put those 4 pens back into the bin to create this experience again and again. Oh, come on, you know you've done this.) You go on a date or meet a colleague for coffee and the noise, the lighting, the whatever, is not great...distraction, lack of presence, the "ick".

You come home from work, walk through your door, and feel... exhausted. You get into your car, notice the to-go coffee cup (from 3 days ago) and your kid's Cheese-Its crumbed in the back seat... agitation spikes. You walk into your office, it's dark, stuffy, messy... energy dips, resistance comes in. You go to write on the white board, and have to move through 4 pens until you find one that works... broken flow and contraction. (Bonus points, if you put those 4 pens back into the bin to create this experience again and again. Oh, come on, you know you've done this.) You go on a date or meet a colleague for coffee and the noise, the lighting, the whatever, is not great...distraction, lack of presence, the "ick". 

Are you with me?

Exhausted reading me yet? Yes. Like that.

OR (quick, let me make it better)... you come home from work, it's your sanctuary, it's clean, it humms... you breathe, your body relaxes, you're home. Your car, it's clean. Yum. You just feel better sitting in it. Your office, it feels great, it's organized, you have flowers on your desk, you've found a light that hooks you up, all pens work. Watch out world. And that date? You move venue or location, or even just name the distraction and release the energy of it... Experience changed.

You get the idea.

All of these are examples of "environmental energy", which impacts our presence, our leadership, and our ability to Show Up as powerfully, present, and clear as possible.

Tending to our environment makes us better leaders. It's that simple.

When a client is stagnant or not hitting optimal performance - one of the first things we do is address their environment. Their environment creates an experience. They get to choose their experience. (#SuperPower.) So the question becomes: Are the choices they're making in their environment supporting them? What can they do about it if not? And what's the dream "state"?

I hold environment as what we surround ourselves with. Everything we have around us either supports us, enlivening and strengthening our energy and resilience, or drains us, depleting invaluable resources.

Environment is one of the easiest things to take for granted, one of the easiest things to fall victim to, AND also one of the most powerful and effective areas to make changes in. (This hits my 70% awareness / 30% action rule.)

At the end of the day, and in the moments in between, your environment and how you partner with it, is a choice.

So... What do you choose?

Tending to environment can be as simple as throwing out those old pens, upgrading your personal space and bedding so that you have the most nourishing environment to sleep and be in, or it can be as "complex" as doing a complete cultural or relationship overhaul because you realize the way you've created the "container" for your culture or relationships is not supporting you all to Show Up at best.

Big or small. Everything counts.

Other places to look? Your office, your home, your closets, your calendar, your clothes, your desktop, the food you put in your body, that leaky tube of toothpaste your partner keeps leaving on the counter, the people you hang out with, beauty or chaos in your space, insert your thing here ____, you get the idea... all of these things impact energetic state and mindset.

So... What are yours? What tweaks are the highest leverage for YOU today?

Hop to.

Desire more? Here are a couple of places to dig in.

Tolerations.

In the land of clearing energy and optimizing performance, I'll often ask clients to make a list of things they're tolerating right now. At first they might struggle to come up with 10 things. (Give them a bit of time and I actually have to shut the exercise down.) They quickly get on a roll.

When you put your awareness and intention on what's not serving you and what you'd like instead - magic happens. Take this as an opportunity to turn every "complaint" you have about your environment into a "request" AND get into action to set it right.

Go home tonight, walk through your house, anything that bugs you, drains you, frustrates you, or feels like it's just not setting you up for the vibe you want -- either fix it now, or if it's more complex and you need help, make a list, identify the next action, and promise to tend to it at a specific later date. BAM.

Food.

Does the food you eat and what you put in your body, set you up for success? Does it help you be your most present and resilient self? Or does it tire you out, fog your brain, or make you edgy? Check it. Our food is our fuel -- whatever we put into our body, makes us. (Want more here? Read Is that "hot dog" worth your next promotion?)

People.

Who are you hanging out with these days? Right now, make a list. Check it twice. And notice your energy as you connect with each relationship. Doesn't matter what type -- business, friend, romance, vendor, partner -- we're looking for the quality and solidity of that relationship. Life giving? Soul sucking? Just notice. And then get into action to shift, nourish, honor, change, appreciate and/or flat out tussle around it. And then dig in.

Here's to creating your reality.

Lead well. // AXC

 

This article first appeared on Inc.com on September 7, 2016.

 

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