"It's dark in here."
"It feels a little frightening."
"I can't see anything. It all seems a little hopeless," said the sheep with his head in a bucket.
What would you say to the sheep?
"Lift up your head!"
"Take your head out of the bucket!"
You see, with your head in a bucket, it all seems dark. All you can see is the immediacy around you. There is very little to light up your day. You can't see all the good around you. But you do have a choice.
Option 1 - You can lift up your head and look around you. See that there are some dark muddy patches, but there is also some green grass.
Option 2 - You can keep your head in the bucket and feel in the dark and isolated.
As I write this blog, we are in the middle of a Coronavirus lockdown. It would be very easy as a leader to only see the darkness of business shutdown and loss of customers and income. But try lifting up your head. Look at the wider perspective around you. Do you have your health? Do you have family, friends? Now ok you might not be able to hug them or shake hands if you are more formal! But you can Facetime or Skype them and they are still there.
Lift up your head, is the first of 7 mindsets that Emerging Leaders (www.emerging-leaders.net) teaches to help us lead ourselves in challenging situations. It means
looking around and gaining perspective
seeing who is around that could support you
looking ahead to see what is coming that could help you
looking ahead to see this is a time that will pass
If you are a leader whose business or job has been affected by a sudden challenge, like many are at the time of writing with the Coronavirus, then consider the good old SWOT analysis to help you.
S - Strength - What do I have that can help me? What am I good at?
W - Weakness - What is holding me back at the moment?
O - Opportunity - What does this current situation give me opportunity to do?
T - Threat - What does this situation actually threaten me with? What is the real threat and what is my emotional panic rather than reality. What can I do to reduce or neutralise this threat? Who can I partner with to help me?
I found this Coronavirus shut down has given me opportunity to finally finish writing my book. It has given me opportunity to complete a qualification portfolio. It has given me opportunity to write some video and blog content. What is your opportunity?
Now there are real threats at present, but when we lift up our heads out of the bucket we can get perspective and see the opportunities rather than just the darkness.
Go on - take your head out of the bucket!