Women Inspiring Women is one of my favourite things and the foundation of my personal journey in writing and co-creating Tara Cronica. I took part in a Women’s Networking Group where the subject was The Inner Journey of an Authentic Leader hosted by the founder Tana Heminsley.
The moment I sat down I was curious and engaged as to what would transpire in a room filled with successful, strong, independent women. I had only interacted with a few of the women in the room but knew who they were from company events. Tana was inspirational, she was calm, very present and approachable, making everyone feel they were in a safe place. I would describe her as a woman who genuinely cared and truly found her purpose. She was aligned in my eyes with what she was meant to be doing, guiding women to find their authentic self and teaching them how to apply it to business as a leader. First step is locating where you are…
We shared openly how we felt when we were authentic or the best version of ourselves. We did a task where we finished a sentence: My Authentic Self (At my best, above the line, I am) : ________. I chose supportive, compassionate and attentive. I am not yet in a leadership role, however I consider myself a leader in life. I related this task with how I felt when giving my teenagers advice and having them leave feeling empowered. We each spoke our truth with ease having our core values and moral compasses engaged. I remember taking a moment to put into words how this made me feel when they left the room.
“I slowly feel myself align with motherhood…letting my body float over the crest of the wake after a swim in an ocean of uncertainty…a sense of relief as I allow my arms to relax opening my heart to what is…what was and what will or could be…my body floats to the surface…effortlessly drifting down the later side of yet another swell in this ocean we call life as a Mother.” It was a moment of Motherhood bliss. I was my authentic self, not judging or needing to react, not forcing my opinion from life experience, just being at ease with my truth, and theirs.
We also finished a sentence: “Personality/Ego (When below the line, I am)_______. I chose self doubting, worried and not balanced. We uncovered our vulnerabilities which seemed to have a common thread among the variety of personalities in the room. We identified how it felt to dip below our authentic self into the Personality/Ego. Being aware was a step in the right direction. We could all agree it feels much better to function above the line in the authentic realm. Having said that laughter filled the room when someone admit-tingly dipped below the line repetitively during the day. As funny as it was to hear others joke about dipping below the line, it was authentic to admit with ease and laugh about it, which in turn connected each of us on another level. We supported each other by adding a relatable nod and challenged one another to think about how to prepare ourselves for triggers that take us into the shadow of our true self.
Triggers can come from within, our own inner dialogue, self sabotage or a personality we don’t see eye to eye with. One of my favourite quotes “Thoughts become things, choose the good ones” ~ Notes from the Universe. Learning to identify what your triggers are will help you navigate through them more quickly. Preparing yourself before you meet with a personality that triggers you will allow you to stay on track and keep the task at hand in focus. We all left with new tools in our kits that will help us lead authentically, recognize when we are a little off balance and how to regain our composure and move forward.
Tana also emphasized how important it was to be kind to ourselves when they ventured down a less favourable path losing sight of our true self. We have all been there from time to time and that’s okay, we are allowed to wallow as long as we don’t plant roots.
My take away goes something like this…“When we align ourselves with others who lead authentically, allow ourselves to be vulnerable, understand the importance of our own inner journey, implement and fuse our core values with the values and ethics of company, magic happens!”