All of us are guilty of getting caught up in too much thinking, too much analysis, too much data. By nature leaders tend to be overthinkers, and we can become victims of staying too much in our head. A wise leader brings to bear not only knowledge but wisdom, and sometimes wisdom tells us not to think too much.
Thinking is good, but when does too much mind become a hurdle?
When it creates “analysis paralysis.” The start to solving any problem is seeking information, but faced with an overabundance of data, background, facts, and numbers, it’s easy to freeze up under the weight of your thoughts.
Wise leaders use data to guide decisions but don’t get bogged down by it.
When it keeps you in a knowledge trap. Trying to weigh every bit of information against all possible outcomes leads to exhaustion and burnout. Learn to trust your instincts—after all, they’re grounded in your knowledge and experience.
Wise leaders understand the difference between knowing everything and knowing what to do. They grasp the key issues of the moment and act on them decisively.
When it keeps you from moving forward. Leaders have visions, dreams, and bright ideas. Building forward momentum takes an enormous amount of effort, and it will never happen if your mind holds you back waiting for perfection.
Wise leaders know to take a leap forward in imperfect circumstances. They know that thinking can’t replace action.
When it keeps you fearful. Fear is a natural emotion and is useful in its place, but fear that keeps you stuck, playing small and avoiding risk, is bad for your leadership and devastating to those you lead. In the grip of fear, it’s easy to define yourself by mistakes and failures—your own or others’—and allow your past to remain their destiny.
Wise leaders listen to their fears but are not led by them. They find ways to be courageous and prevent emotional complications from affecting their judgment.
When it keeps from being honest with yourself. We all have ideas about who we are and what we are about. When thinking feeds that ego, it keeps us from understanding and learning new things about ourselves.
Wise leaders understand that to grow is to listen and to develop is to learn.
In short, wise leaders know when thinking gets in their way of leading, and they allow what they know in their heart to lead the way.
To become a wise leader yourself, you need to master the skills that moderate your thinking—from examining situations to interpreting information—learn to apply your wisdom to your leadership, and keep growing.
Our thoughts are not just containers for our thinking, they are impressions that should be fired up and ignited.
Lead From Within: A wise leader quickly senses what lies behind a situation and decides on the needed action. Practical wisdom enables leaders to intuitively understand the nature and meaning of people, things, and events.
N A T I O N A L B E S T S E L L E R
The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness
After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.
Additional Reading you might enjoy:
- 12 Successful Leadership Principles That Never Grow Old
- A Leadership Manifesto: A Guide To Greatness
- How to Succeed as A New Leader
- 12 of The Most Common Lies Leaders Tell Themselves
- 4 Proven Reasons Why Intuitive Leaders Make Great Leaders
- The One Quality Every Leader Needs To Succeed
- The Deception Trap of Leadership
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Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR, Inc.com, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.