What if there was a way to be a better leader simply by using more of what you already know? You can increase your self-awareness and have more impactful leadership by paying attention to the wisdom in your head, your heart and your gut. Let me explain.
Traditional science has taught us that we learn with our brain. Some people would say that they naturally perceive information and make decisions with logical thought in their brain. There is nothing wrong with this; however it is incomplete. Science has now proven that our heart and our gut have intelligence of their own. Our heart actually connects with others neurologically from several feet away, and communication between our heart and brain is a dynamic, ongoing, two-way dialogue. Our heart actually seeks out new experiences and is open to new possibilities that intuitively affect our lives. If we pay attention to our heart, we can access and use what it tells us to improve performance in ourselves and others. Some people will say they make most of their decisions from their heart.
Then there’s our gut. You know that “gut feeling” you get sometimes? We talk about “trusting our gut” and experience “sinking in our gut” when we get bad news. Many of us use our “gut instinct” when we make difficult decisions, or “check our gut” on what to do in a challenging situation. These are more than metaphors. Our gut actually provides neurological energy, courage, and motivation to get things done. Some people naturally make decisions with their gut. They are all about “getting things done.”
Everyone has a “default mode” to our head, our heart, or our gut when we interact with others, process information, make decisions, and lead our teams. If we practice paying attention to not only our “default mode,” but the other two centers of intelligence in our bodies, this higher self-awareness increases our power and effectiveness. The result is better decisions and more well-rounded interactions with others.
Access all your power! The next time you make a decision or have a challenging interaction, try consciously “checking in” with your head, your heart and your gut, and see what all three are telling you. Doing this can help you respond with more balance, confidence, and effectiveness. I’d love to hear about your results doing this—feel free to leave your comments below.
If you want to practice using all three in leadership- or any interactions- consider an equine assisted coaching session. Horses respond immediately and authentically to our head, our heart, and our gut simultaneously. They literally know no other way to be.
With the help of these four-legged biofeedback machines, we get visible, immediate, unflinchingly accurate feedback on all three. Simply by responding to us, horses teach us to pay attention to the wisdom in our brain, our heart, and our gut. This is how our leadership can be better when we use “horse wisdom!”