Sunday, February 04, 2018

Minimalism and Leadership

One of the ideas I have found myself to be most influenced by in recent times is that of minimalism. Minimalism in possessions, but also in thoughts and actions.
Being in a new role where the stakes always seem high hasn't been easy, but the only idea that has helped me cope is the constant guiding question of: is this strategic? What is the best use of my twenty-four hours? How much of it is going towards quelling short-term fires, and how much towards longer-term growth, well-being, and slow but stronger and systemic change. Could even the first kind be a step towards the second? What is life but a series of decisions we make in the face of constraints? What is life but a long workshop in strategy? Isn't minimalism just strategy - choosing only what adds value and recognizing that any surplus might actually deplete value?
Some of my strongest successes in my role as an enabler have been when I've found the sweet spot of 'enough', when I've let go of the desire to prove *my* relevance, and have found comfort in my role of planting ideas and enabling conditions for them to be nurtured, when I've freed myself from the comforting feeling of *doing* a lot. Last week was a significant step in this direction. In attempting to find my method in madness, I stumbled upon the life-changing link between minimalism and trust. The challenge we are attempting to tackle requires a collective, and that requires that we don't just support, challenge, but also trust each other. That's the only way we'll be able to define a beautiful line of action around our roles - a limiting line of action that will make our locus of impact limitless.

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