Early in my career I was under intense pressure and was caught in a cycle of constant dissatisfaction. It seemed like no matter my achievements, my focus was always on what was lacking.
A conversation with my mentor brought me to the realization that I had a lot of positive things going for me.
For some reason that I had chosen to minimize or even worse, ignore the good. This revelation led me to understand that I could choose to be positive and approach my life with a gratitude mindset or I could choose the opposite.
I decided to embrace gratitude and this has been the foundation of how I approach my life.
I’ve observed that the executive women I coach who practice gratitude experience more life satisfaction.
Conversely, those who lean towards a negative mindset are confronted with counterproductive barriers that limit them from realizing their full potential.
Let’s discuss the upside of being grateful. I’ll give a 2 tips to help you be intentional about developing a consistent gratitude practice and how to foster this mindset within the teams you lead.
Find the full transcript and other resources for women leaders at: https://livingwhileleading.com/25.
How Women IT Executives Enhance Leadership & Resilience Through Gratitude
It’s been scientifically proven that gratitude helps you feel more positive emotions, cherish good experiences, improve your health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships.
Other positive benefits of practicing gratitude include:
- Enhanced Leadership Skills: Gratitude helps nurture a positive work environment. You can boost morale and increase productivity when you show appreciation and acknowledge your team’s efforts and achievements.
- Improved Decision-Making and Perspective: A regular gratitude practice can enhance your clarity of thought. This is crucial for high-pressure decision-making scenarios typical in executive roles. By acknowledging the good in challenging situations, you can maintain a balanced perspective, allowing for more thoughtful and comprehensive decision-making.
- Stress Reduction and Resilience: Practicing gratitude can shift focus from stressors to aspects of work and life that are fulfilling and rewarding. This shift in focus builds resilience, enabling you to navigate challenges with a stronger, more positive mindset.
Women Leaders Can Balance Gratitude and Growth
Gratitude, while valuable, can become a double-edged sword if not balanced correctly. It’s important not to confuse gratitude with a sense of undue loyalty or complacency which could unintentionally limit your growth.
As an executive coach, I often help women leaders navigate this challenge and reframe their perspective on gratitude and ambition by helping them to:
- Differentiate Contentment from Complacency: It’s crucial to celebrate and be grateful for what you‘ve accomplished while recognizing that pursuing new goals doesn’t diminish your current achievements.
- Reconcile Gratitude with Ambition: Understand that gratitude and ambition can coexist harmoniously. Having a balance allows you to appreciate your journey while eagerly looking forward to what lies ahead.
- Address Guilt and Emotional Conflict: Work through feelings of guilt or conflict associated with wanting more. The roots of these emotions need to be explored and strategies have to be developed to overcome them.
Strategies for Women Executives to Enhance Leadership with Gratitude
When you embrace gratitude, you unlock your potential. Here are 2 strategies to consider to guide yourself or your team members towards a more fulfilling and appreciative professional journey.
- Encourage Mindfulness and Reflection: Adopt a mindfulness practice that helps foster a deeper awareness and appreciation of your current fortunes. This heightened mindfulness not only benefits you personally but also enhances your ability to connect with and understand your team and others on a deeper level.
- Foster a Culture of Appreciation: Challenge yourself to actively express gratitude in your professional and personal environment. This includes acknowledging the efforts of your colleagues and team members. It also means appreciating your own achievements — no matter the scale.
A culture of appreciation can boost team morale and reflect the positive impact of your empathetic leadership style.
Challenge yourself to practice gratitude as a continual habit. You’ll enrich your life. When you embed gratitude into your leadership style, you’ll foster a more cohesive and motivated team environment.
Remember, you’re the solution to claiming what’s important to you!