“Live with no excuses and love with no regrets.”
~Montel Williams

I just found out that one of our former clients was extremely sick in the hospital with COVID last month. When we caught up, he told me that the experience illuminated two truths for him. First, that he needed to finally do the work he cared passionately about (for him it’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion work) – to live with no excuses and to not waste any more time in his work-life. And second, that he needed to acknowledge how much he cared for people.

“I told my dad I loved him,” my client told me. “That’s not something we ever did.”

“Oh,” he added, “and I hope you don’t mind my saying this, but I love you.”

“I never mind that.” I answered. “In all the appropriate ways, I love you too.”

Early in my coaching, my mentor coach told me that my only job was to love my clients. That seemed a bit weird to me at the time, but I’ve come to realize that it is my job. It’s my job to create a safe space for my clients to let off steam and admit their frustrations…and to step even more into being their best selves. It’s my job to hold up a mirror so they can see and strengthen their strengths…and acknowledge how they’re sometimes getting in their own way with their thought-patterns and behaviors. It’s my job to cheer them on for their wins and to console them during their losses…and to remind them that in this moment they can choose how they want to show up.

Simply put, it’s our job to love our clients. And to encourage them to love everyone around them (in all the appropriate ways).

But nearly every time we talk about love with our clients, I feel like we’re using a four-letter-word. “There’s no room for love in business!,” they tell us. Even now you may be wondering why we’re writing about love in a leadership blog post. You may be asking how you can meet goals and get people in line and close client deals if you’re focused on love. And what in heck does living with no excuses and loving with no regrets have to do with leadership anyway, especially now?

We would, of course, argue that Montel’s advice is most pertinent right now. That now is a time to make sure we’re all leading as Thoughtfully as possible, with no excuses. That now is the time to acknowledge the care and connection – the love – we have for those we work and live with.

Thoughtful Leadership is about being present, intentional, and authentic. So, when you’re on your fifth Zoom call of the day, you’re focused on the people you’re Zooming with, rather than multi-tasking and trying to clear out emails. (Spoiler alert – you can’t effectively focus on more than one thing at a time.) Thoughtful Leadership also dictates that before you get on that Zoom call you know why you’re having the Zoom call, why your participation is needed, and why you should be having it now. Is there a better use of everyone’s time at this moment? (Hint – the time may be better spent clearing through emails while NOT on a Zoom call.)

And lastly, Thoughtful Leadership allows for our and everyone else’s humanness. Especially now. We don’t know what has happened in everyone’s lives since we’ve last spoken or what good – or bad – news they may have gotten. We have to allow for the emotions and the rollercoaster nature of our current realities in a way that helps us keep our balance. If we ignore or pretend that it’s “business as usual,” chances are that the emotions and realities will more likely get in our way or derail us.

Thoughtful Leadership is the type of appreciation and support – the type of love – that we can give to those around us. Now, when we’re all challenged and triggered and unsure, we can live and connect with no excuses and love those around us – and life – with no regrets.

How are you living with no excuses and loving with no regrets now?
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If you enjoyed this post, you can read more like it in our book, The Power of Thoughtful Leadership: 101 Minutes To Being the Leader You Want To Be, available on Amazon.

Let’s join together to share love now – contact Robyn at rmcleod@chatsworthconsulting.com.

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