When we moved back to PEI 7+ years ago, I bought our current home. It’s charming, old, and in a great location. Despite its many attributes, we encountered some limitations. The previous owners had installed a high efficiency propane furnace to help sell the house. I expected a moderate fuel bill. That first winter was really cold and I turned up the heat. The propane bills kept arriving and by the end of the winter I was shocked to have spent several thousand dollars heating the inside and outside. Despite wanting to ignore it, I faced reality and booked an energy audit. And instead of the beautiful new kitchen cabinets and appliances I dreamed about, I invested in new windows and spray foam insulation in the basement. The payback was quick. Our home became cozier and the bill was cut in half.
Along the way, I have started to think about conscious leadership like investing in a home. Conscious leaders face reality versus ramping up their delusions. They know that to lead effectively, they first need to invest in their foundation and walls.
An organization full of reactive leaders is like a drafty house. The leaders and their teams work really hard to achieve goals just like our high efficiency furnace did. But despite their good intentions, they unconsciously come at most things in a slightly threatened state. Their energy is spent worrying, trying to control things outside their control, and trying to keep the peace.
Sadly, time, money, creativity, and goodwill seep out the cracks like heat escaping from a poorly insulated house.
For me, windows and insulation are like the inner game of leadership.
They aren’t showy like a high-end kitchen but they sure do make a house efficient and really comfortable to live in.
Many of the leaders who graduate from our Conscious Leader Forum say they wish they had learned conscious leadership practices as younger leaders. They wish they’d invested earlier because they know that some “spray foam and new windows” earlier on would have made it so much more comfortable to live and lead in their own bodies.