By Barbara Mutedzi

Why is it important for you to observe and witness yourself in your everyday activities? Because, the more you do that, the more aware you are of yourself and the results of your actions; and thus the ability to adjust them as needed.

This is emotional agility.

In other words, the more you are aware of yourself, that is, practicing self-awareness in action, the higher your EQ becomes.

The higher your EQ becomes, and with continued self-observation and adjustment, the more emotionally agile you become.

Why is this all important to you as a leader?

In observing how you act and react in all you do, you are able to identify what triggers you or what helps you in performing at higher standards.

In this way, you are better able to address any psychological, subconscious traumas that have been unresolved from the past and are now presenting and perhaps hindering you from excelling or achieving you biggest goals and visions.

Emotionally intelligent and agile leaders are better able at creating conducive and psychologically safe environments for the people they lead, to thrive and flourish.

When the People you lead, feel seen, heard and understood; they will stick around and perform at even higher standards, thus increasing your ROI.

People + Performance = Higher ROI.

🔻 Real-Life Example
A Dean at a university I used to work for once said to me: ‘I don’t know how to lead you because you are not like anyone I have ever led.”

Now, in the history of the university, I was the first lecturer who was rated 10 out of 10 by the students; a high performer contributing to higher ratings, engagement and therefore longterm registrations and profit for the university.

But after a year, I left. Why?

Because instead of the Dean taking the time to get to know me and to leverage my high performing habits and impact at a greater scale, he engaged in micro aggressive tactics including belittling and isolating me; engaging in gaslighting behaviors and racism.

He took away all the duties I was excelling at and gave them to another already overwhelmed and overworked employee.

He passed derogatory comments and broke the confidentiality policy rules by sharing private meeting information with other staff members.

He lied in emails, and openly treated myself and other colleagues badly.

Through all these forms of workplace bullying, he succeeded in creating a psychologically hostile and unsafe environment. Five (5) other colleagues left within this same year.

As you may know, the process of losing high performers, hiring new staff, onboarding and compensating those who are leaving, is time consuming and costly to the balance sheet – especially in the case of a high rate of turnover of staff members. If profit is a factor in the work that you do, this is a matter that may need to be resolved.

📖 Research
Scientific research shows that the type of behavior exhibited by the Dean is borne out of a limited worldview, poor exposure to inclusive and diverse leadership, as well as unresolved childhood and at times, this same trauma, relived as an adult.

Where someone has not had the opportunity to do the work of witnessing themselves in action, their awareness, esteem and emotional intelligence is low.

They are in constant fight, flight and freeze trauma-survival modes within their own selves; survival modes that may have been useful in the past, but no longer serve their current and future best interests.

Half the time, they don’t realize that they are projecting all this in the environments that they are leading and serving. And in the other half; they may realize what they are doing and the negative effects, but feel powerless with lack of knowledge to stop.

This is where Healing in Leadership is so very important.

We can only lead others to the level at which we ourselves are. The more we heal, through increased self-awareness, and therefore emotional intelligence, the better able we are at creating psychologically safe environment for those we lead, serve and look after to step in, flourish and contribute at even higher levels.

With loving kindness, grace and gratitude

Your Coach Barbara

Barbara Mutedzi is a life coach