Vulnerable leader..

This semester I am taking a Business class on Leadership and we were given the prompt:

繚A current or past – yet still vexing – leadership breakdown from YOUR life

繚Where you are/were trying to lead (from a position of authority or not) which you will present to your group

And here is the outline-draft of my presentation….:

  • I was debating on whether to be vulnerable or to play it safe in my presentation, and I am choosing to try a little different approach and,  therefore, to be vulnerable
  • I am presenting a current leadership breakdown of my life. As the last years have been extremely tough both mentally and physically as I today sit as a product, as an outcome of a situation where I have failed to be my own leader and authority figure, and consequently, it has lead me to a burned-out, low-motivated and injured state.
  • To give a little background: My whole life I have been known as the athlete, either it was on the soccer field, basketball court or on the track, a person who delivered, always with energy and positivity, confidence on the sporting arena, and joy towards what I was doing. However, in 2013, my then 14-year-old brother was diagnosed with cancer, MDS, and who after a year went into remission. During this time I was introduced to symptoms that would follow me to this day; introduced to stress, sleep difficulties, injuries, and little joy. Later in 2017, I was informed that I had had Mono, but they did not know when or for how long. During this time, It became harder to perform and workout physically, but also mentally, which caught up to me this past year.
  • As we are all leaders of our own lives and as I am reflecting upon these years, I never felt like I was in the position of authority over myself, but rather always following the rules, what I was supposed to do, what I thought people expected of me.
  • In addition, I was never honest with myself, as I never clarified what my values were, as I had other people deciding for me, what to do, when to do it, how to do it. Never taking the leader position in my own life, never daring to more correctly. Never being honest with myself and what I wanted to do
  • I never stopped to ask myself the questions: Why? What? How? as I did not believe that I had the competence to do so
  • SO, as discussed in this class leaders speak, but more importantly they listen and I never really listened to what my body/mind needed. Nor did I really know what intuition was. This resulted in me continuously increasing the distance from my true self, from who I am, want I want, where I want to go.
  • Checking in with myself became an unknown territory.  
  • The only goal I had was going to the Olympics, which is expected of an athlete who is investing all her time and energy into the sport. But it never felt personal. And this made forward-looking hard.
  • I continued to train through my physical and mental injuries, competing in every competition I was supposed to, traveling internationally for meets, showing up at social events, staying up late with school work, and never really taking a break, nor did I know how or what it was.
  • I continuously felt more and more internally tired – lost, but I continued, and in February 2020 I was told that I had my very first stress-reaction, then Covid-19 came, and then I arrived back home in Norway, and my body finally was able to sit down, to land both physically and mentally, and I listened. And I went into a complete burnout state. But more importantly, I was disappointed in myself. I had lost all sense of inspiration, and as I had no base values to fall back on, I clearly saw how I did not have a vision, goal, or any sense of direction
  • It has been scary to feel so out of control both in a physical but also mental state
  • Not doing what I am supposed to do, what I have been so used to doing. It is both a physical and mental battle. An identity crisis.
  • So this summer, I tried to take a big step back doing completely other things and to start from scratch, but I have and am experiencing how hard it is to get rid of old habits/routines/and in general what is comfortable and safe.
  • So, in my process of reinventing myself, I know that I want to find my own way, and to become the leader of my own life
    • I want to start to lead with authority, on the basis of building more belief in my abilities
    • An so I know I have to start the process of compressing a new vision, new goals, new values
    • even though I find it extremely hard to just let go.

Who is the leader in your life ?

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3 Comments

  1. railwayst

    Life is the sum of choice; as a leader you try to be cognisant of the fact that once something is first done it can never be undone and act accordningly.
    We are not always so wise when it comes to our own lives, probably because wisdom is something you cannot be taught but must learn from personal experience.
    Good luck with the journey!

    1. Mina Marie Anglero

      Very well said. Thank you for your comment!

  2. Your not so secret admirer

    I hope this semester gave you the time and space you needed to reinvent yourself in your ideal image. Anything is possible with the right recipe of faith, selfless patience, and commitment. You have already come so far and I hope you are proud of yourself. Stay curious and keep challenging yourself with mindful growth :)!

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