Have you ever walked a labyrinth?
This year, I have walked a labyrinth at the National Cathedral in Washington DC, Grace Cathedral in San Francisco and Trinity Church in Santa Barbara. Each labyrinth is similar in that it has a place to begin and then circles along a series of walking paths as you move towards the center. There are rituals and practices associated with a labyrinths on how to prepare to enter, how to pause mid way, and how to conclude. Yet, most people just start walking, taking small reflective steps around the ancient tradition’s pathways.
I started getting curious about labyrinths when I began reading all the literature on leadership and mindfulness. I had heard from many leaders about the value of mindfulness practices and thought I might try to enter into a mindfulness practice. I read a few articles about it and tried to build on the practices. I know that one of the first practices is to not judge your self during the practice. However, I’m the first to admit that I am really bad at meditating. I just get so frustrated by the sitting and trying to still my mind and a labyrinth allows movement and reflection.
I love the beauty of the labyrinths yet I still struggle with staying focused. Until, I stumbled on the University California Santa Barbara’s labyrinth. The ocean view was spectacular and the dirt path lined with stones quickly brought me into deep connection with the earth. I entered into the labyrinth and I expected my same lack of focus. Yet, this time, I centered.I was practicing mindfulness.I found a way to customize this leadership advice based on my values and strengths.
As leaders we are bombarded with the latest article, webinar, book, and methodology that promises to help us become the best leaders possible. The mindfulness trend is just one of many trends in leadership development. Visit any airport bookstore and you’ll see all kinds of books on how to be a better leader.
Which ones catch your eye? How can you customize a great leadership idea to suit you? If you are a relationship builder, what do you read to help with your leadership style? Are you a strategic thinker? Who is your favorite author? If you are a leader who likes to get things done, where do you find out about the best practices? What leadership genre do you find yourself attracted to and how are you customizing the content to meet your needs?
How have you modified the lesson to meet your needs? I’d love learn with you. Contact me to share your favorite leadership trend.