April 14, 2010

Just for Fun: Burgers and Beer Social


Remember chili cheese fries? I had completely forgotten about this delicacy but was happily reminded at our casual social Friday night: Burgers and Beer at the Dutch Goose. My $10 ticket bought a giant beer I couldn’t finish, endless baskets of fried cheese, deviled eggs, French fries and buckets of the aforementioned greasy, heavenly wonderment. I just started eating again at lunch today.

Thanks so much to the Enrichment Committee for organizing such a relaxed, fun kickoff to the weekend. It was fun to just change into jeans and pop on over as soon as the hubby got home from work.

April 01, 2010

April 2010 - Inspiration for Leaders

Giving Credit Where Credit is Due, with Humility

"Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending." -- Maria Robinson

It’s already April! You may have fast-forwarded a little to think ahead to next year, but, as a leader, there is still some work to do. As you prepare to wrap up and complete your League year, it’s critical to reflect on how successful your committee has been. Whether you’ve knocked a new project out of the park, helped a new idea become reality, or maintained an aspect of the League that already works well – you have no doubt had successes that deserve celebrating.

A tenet to remember is that a good leader should practice humility as successes are celebrated. Humility is one of those words that can sometimes be misunderstood. I looked it up and found the following message about humility:

Humility is all about maintaining our pride about who we are, about our achievements, about our worth - but without arrogance. It's about being content to let others discover the layers of our talents without having to boast about them.

Another mark of a leader who practices humility is his or her treatment of others. Such leaders treat everyone with respect regardless of position. Someone once said: the sign of a gentleman is how he treats those who can be of absolutely no use to him.

Something interesting happens, too, when we approach situations from a perspective of humility: it opens us up to possibilities, as we choose open-mindedness and curiosity over protecting our point of view. We spend more time willing to learn from what others have to offer. We forget about being perfect and we enjoy being in the moment.

Here are a few suggestions on practicing humility:

  1. There are times when swallowing one's pride is particularly difficult and any intentions of humility fly out the window, as we get engaged in a contest of perfection, each side seeking to look good. If you find yourself in such no-win situations, consider developing some strategies to ensure that the circumstances don't lead you to lose your grace. Try this sometimes: just stop talking and allow the other person to be in the limelight. There is something very liberating in this strategy.
  2. Here are three magical words that will produce more peace of mind than a week at an expensive retreat: "You are right."
  3. Catch yourself if you slip into over-stepping or coaching without permission - is your desire to impose your point of view overtaking good judgment?
  4. Seek others' input on how you are showing up in your leadership path. Ask: "How am I doing?" It takes humility to ask such a question. And even more humility to consider the answer.
  5. Encourage the practice of humility in your committee through your own example: every time you share credit for successes with others, you reinforce the culture for your members. Consider mentoring or coaching emerging leaders on this key attribute of leadership.

There are many benefits to practicing humility: it improves relationships across all levels, it reduces anxiety, it encourages more openness and actually, it enhances one's self-confidence.

While I do not claim to be any sort of authority on this, I believe that showing your genuine interest in others and giving them credit where credit is due, can really propel us toward a whole host of future successes.

Enjoy tying that bow on the work you’ve done… and sincere thanks for everything. It will be fun to celebrate with you in May!

Some of this month’s sources include: content from http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newLDR_69.htm

Do you feel inspired? Do you have suggestions for future topics? If you have questions or comments, or just want to comment on what you’ve read, please send a note to the Nominating Committee.