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Filtering by Tag: truth

6 Fears That Lead You to Rationalize Your Behavior- Clarity #33

Alan Andersen

The evolution of a leader includes an ever-increasing emotional intelligence, starting with self-awareness. If you lack self-awareness, you are unable to see when you step out of integrity. In other words, you are unable to see how your words, thoughts, and actions are not in alignment. This dissonance forces an auto response to spin the story — leading to compromised truth, ending with a skewed reality.

Conversely, if you’re a leader with high self-awareness, you are able to quickly discern when and where you are out of alignment with truth. You quickly see your error, admit fault, and take personal accountability. You take action to repair the crack in the relationships due to lack of judgment, and with your words and action, you own the issue at hand. The humility of the self-aware leader leaves plenty of room to learn from mistakes, be curious to what you do not yet know, and be open to feedback as a way to learn and grow.

Most people don’t intentionally rationalize. It comes from being scared, to be blunt. If you have taken the Talent Insight Report, you know that there are four fears that people struggle with and will do most anything to avoid.

  • Fear of Being Taken Advantage Of
  • Fear of Social Rejection
  • Fear of Loss of Security
  • Fear of Making Mistakes

Or how about the two fears of the successful entrepreneur:

  • Will I be found out?
  • Do I have what it takes?

Fear gets in the way of truth, and thus we must rationalize or falsify something in order to psychologically survive and bring a sense of order and control.

What do you think? What are other fears that cause leaders to rationalize?

Your Coach,

This article originally appeared at True Life Coaching

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Are You a Liar?

Alan Andersen

Maybe that’s too harsh. Are you a liar, or do you “just” tell white lies to get what you want?

Are you feeling defensive right now? Is a twinge of guilt washing over you as you to scan for the unsubscribe button?

This article is for leaders who believe they are people of integrity. Anyone who holds “integrity, honesty, respect” as core values, this is for you, because I believe you truly want to honor your values. Sadly, it is inevitable that we lie almost every day — to ourselves, our loved ones, our colleagues, and strangers. We consider ourselves honest, but we lie whenever it serves us.

The Stress of Lying

Why am I being so direct and harsh? Because I am seeing too many leaders buckle under stress and trade in their values for a quick fix to their problems. The more stressed you are, the more lies you tell, and the deeper is the hole you are digging for yourself.

Trust me, I have been coaching leaders for 15 years. The stress from living a lie will destroy you, and the innocent people around you. In the end, the family you want to protect and provide for is the most devastated by your lies.

Where Does It Start?

Cognitive Dissonance is a social psychology term I find fascinating. Basically, you can’t believe one thing and behave in an opposite manner. The psychological stress (or dissonance) it causes forces one or the other (the belief or the action) to change. So, you either justify the lie in your head so that you can continue to (falsely) uphold your integrity value, or you abandon the lie and start living as a person of integrity lives.

Thus lying starts with self-betrayal. You betray your own values and then begin blaming another person or circumstance for your own self-betrayal. Again, you cannot live with the stress or dissonance of betraying your own values, so your integrity goes out the window and you begin to live in your altered reality.

I use an excellent book called Leadership and Self-Deception with my high-performing leadership teams. It talks about how quickly we can put people “in the box” and treat them as objects instead of human beings. We have no problem lying about them and destroying them, because of the story we are telling ourselves from our own imprisoned box.

Leaders Spin and Sell the Lie

If you are stuck in the spin cycle, you will need to hire a coach to support you as courageously you journey back to your integrity. Without outside perspective we will spin stories and get others to agree with our “story.” When we are living in our own self-betrayal and out of alignment from our own values, there is a need to sell our lie to get other people to join us. When there is a common enemy to fight, there is unity; however, when we create the enemy out of our own self-betrayal we are headed down a path of mass destruction.

Now, please keep your social filters in place and use common sense as you process what I’m saying. But also challenge yourself to stop tolerating this cowardly — and I might add, narcissistic — behavior. Wouldn’t you agree that liars are cowards? I know when I lie that is what I am — a coward! It takes a brave person to confront the lies in their life and take ownership of their own behaviors.

How Does It End?

Basically, this is how it ends. You either commit to just STOP IT! Or you remove integrity from your resume and continue being a liar.

One way or another, as a leader you will be found out. In the end, truth wins out. WhiIe it takes years to build a reputation and credibility, it takes mere moments to destroy it. You can play the game for just so long and at the worse possible moment the house of cards will fall.

Choose to be brave today. Choose integrity. Stop listening to anyone who is leading you deeper into lying. Be a courageous truth teller who does not self-protect, but faces life trusting that integrity is the most valuable asset for a leader.

You are not alone. If you are stuck, reach out. We help leaders get out of the spin cycle, so don’t believe the lie you are on your own. You can be supported and on the way to being the best you! Today. Just ask.

Your Coach for Clarity,

This article Are You a Liar? originally appeared at True Life Coaching

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Educated Far Above Our Level of Execution

Alan Andersen

“We are educated far above our level of execution.”

Yesterday I answered a comment by Joe on Linked In with the above statement I have adapted from wise people before me.  Most leaders know the truth of what they are “suppose” to do.  Most leaders know exactly what they “should” do. Most have the answers inside their head but something draws them away from from what they “need” to do. Most have heard it before and in their head say, “I know, I know.”

Why do we know so much in our head and yet keep doing the same thing over and over?  My theory is while we know it in our head, we reject it with our heart.  Somewhere our negative self-talk, skewed beliefs regarding our value / worth, and other noise overwhelms the truth we have inside.  Now, of course, there are times that we get busy and just forget to live the principles we espouse and with a little kick we get back on our path.  I'm confronting willful resistance to what you know is best for you.

To face the truth we must be first see reality and truth from a different lens. Thus we must get to higher ground.  Get the eagle's view on life.  See the forest through the trees. Rise above our own jellyfish mentality of just getting through the day and LIVE what we know.

There are two words I disrespect – “I know.”  Well at least when they are in response to a truth someone shares with you.  What I would respect instead is “I know that to be true and I have chosen to disregard it, remind me of what I know to be true.”

You were meant for higher living and that takes discipline and it helps to have a truth-teller in your life.  Who is your truth-teller that will speak what you know to be true in your life?  Will you thank them today?  I would love to hear your success stories or even current struggles on overcoming the “supposed to,” “shoulds” and “need to's.”

If you have taken my Life 301 class you know that we don't do anything we don't WANT to do.  So what do you WANT to be different?

Your Coach,

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