As I have consulted with leaders and teams, I know people are craving hope and wishing for more clarity, connection, and courage in this time of chaos. The unsteady ground has already shaken many people loose, financially, emotionally, mentally, and relationally. It does not seem like the ground will stop shaking soon. Yet others, at least financially, are doing well right now. Quite well. But finances are only one facet of our ability to cope and thrive in life. I do not mean to diminish the real advantage stable finances have against much of the crises we face; but all of us no matter our circumstance may feel that we are floating somewhere between a lost world and new world the needs to emerge.
We are all in the same storm but we are not all in the same boat Click To Tweet
Each person experiences and copes with challenges differently. So how do we keep our boat right side up and find the shore of the new world?
Could Spiritual Intelligence be a key?
In previous posts I have defined SQ, explained business benefits and outlined some of the traits of SQ.
Enhanced spiritual intelligence is accessible to anyone wanting to explore a deeper and higher way of being with others, themselves, in society and with their higher power. It fosters clarity, connection, and courage.
Just to recap a few highlights: Signs of high SQ include an ability to think out of the box, authentic humility, and an access to energies that come from something higher – beyond the ego, and our physical, cognitive, or emotional selves.
Operating from Spiritual Intelligence may allow us to make more wise and compassionate decisions and be a calm and healing presence for ourselves, loved ones and those in our business and community.
Despite the confusion and uncertainty if we spend some time getting clear on our sense of purpose will be an anchoring exercise in these storms. How have you defined your inner purpose and your outer purpose? Are they aligned? Does your reason for being fit with your business or organizational goals? How about in your community organizations and faith groups?
Helping you and your organization through these times requires a purpose that unifies and does not divide. Can you collectively define a purpose that helps take your organizational members outside of themselves in service to others (Delbecq, 2009, p. 9)? If we can focus less on our fears and more on our higher purpose we can become more grounded. Then we can be more effective in our service to others which forges greater connection which many are craving.
Do you have a culture of connection in your life and work? Some conditions in such a culture might include:
- Authentic sense of solidarity and communion and that comes from a shared purpose;
- Celebration of the gifts of different members, where people can bring their strengths to the table;
- Each person has an important role and all are cherished in their uniqueness (Delbecq, 2009. p.9).
Imagine the difference between where this culture of connection and engagement is present or not.
The more we can foster connection, in-person or virtually, will positively impact our culture. “Cultural identity is a great cohering influence on people; it binds us together with a shared lens for interpreting life and deciding our actions. It offers stable ground to stand on in the midst of chaos” (Wheatley, 2012, p.47).
Connection goes beyond just or immediate relationships to a bigger meaning. People with high SQ know that all things are interconnected. We have a sense of holism, seeing the larger patterns and relationships in our world (Zohar, 2005, p. 47). I know that when I embrace this, I have a sense of belonging, not just to others but to something bigger. To be honest I have been stuck in some downward spirals from time to time but lifting up and knowing something bigger is afoot, something better is possible keeps me in hope.
This hope can also renew a sense of joy and possibility. Are you able to encourage creative play and joy in work and your teams (Delbecq, 2009. p.9)?
So, having clarity on our purpose, and a connection to others and something greater can lead to new found courage.Having clarity on our purpose, and a connection to others and something greater can lead to new found courage. Click To Tweet
Individuals who develop their spiritual intelligence notice more ability to be comfortable with uncertainty by exercising an adaptive confidence: “We are willing to enter uncertain situations because we have a higher purpose and we are confident that we can learn and adapt as we move forward” (Quinn, 2004) This doesn’t mean being naïve about challenges but rather challenges are defined in a manner that admits difficulty and struggles. However, instead of a fearful approach, challenges can be seen with hope and optimism (Delbecq, 2009).
Courage allows us to have a tolerance for imperfection, being patient with ourselves and others (Hyson, 2013, p. 112) and trusting we can learn through mistakes and move forward. We find ways to make positive use of adversity (Zohar, 2005, p. 47).Chaos and mistakes can be the birthplace of creativity. Click To Tweet
Chaos and mistakes can be the birthplace of creativity. One author wrote about uncertainty, letting go, and surrendering so the future can emerge. He described the technique as presencing [which is] “seeing from our deepest source.” That is, sensing and operating from one’s highest future potential. It is the state each of us can experience when we open not just our minds but our hearts and our wills—our impetus to act—in order to deal with what is emerging all around us as new realities (Scharmer, 2009, p. 45).
So this is a lot to think about.
I hope you find yourself in a place where you have clarity, connection, and courage.
I love sharing these ideas but I also am a work in progress. If you want to chat about where you are at in your personal perspective or leadership roles, let’s connect. If you want to explore your own sense of spiritual intelligence read more here or book a time to talk about an assessment.
Delbecq, A. L. (2009). Spirituality and business: One scholar’s perspective. Journal of Management, Spirituality & Religion, 6(1), 3–13. https://doi.org/10.1080/14766080802648599
Hyson, P. (2013). The spirited leader: The potential of spiritual intelligence to improve leadership. The International Journal of Leadership in Public Services, 9(3/4), 109–115.
Quinn, R. E. (2004). Building the bridge as you walk on it: A guide for leading change (1st ed.). Jossey-Bass.
Scharmer, C. O. (2009). Theory U leading from the future as it emerges: The social technology of presencing (1st ed.). Berrett-Koehler Publishers.
Wheatley, M. J. (2012). So far from home: Lost and found in our brave new world. Berrett-Koehler Publishers.
Zohar, D. (2005). Spiritually intelligent leadership. Leader to Leader, 2005(38), 45–51. https://doi.org/10.1002/ltl.153