Keeping Your Leadership Enthusiasm Alive

I was recently asked how to keep the enthusiasm for leading alive.

This is an important question, because if you are “feeling” enthused, it is likely showing in your focus, performance, attitude and more. Since the question is important, the answer is valuable. The challenge is that, in part, the answer must come from within you.

If that were all I was going to say, that would make for a very short blog post and a pretty unsatisfactory answer. So, here are some things to consider if you find your enthusiasm waning.

The first definition of enthusiasm on Dictionary.com is “absorbing or controlling possession of the mind by any interest or pursuit; lively interest…” This leads to a pair of related questions:

How do you “feel” when something bores you or you are disinterested in it? (Whatever your answer, I’m confident it wasn’t “enthused.”)

How do you feel when you are actively interested in a subject, topic or pursuit? (I’m guessing your answer here is much closer to “enthusiasm.”)

So there, in short is the answer. As has been taught in the Dale Carnegie Course for over 70 years — Act enthusiastic and you’ll be enthusiastic. Science and personal experience tells us that feelings follow actions. Dive into any activity quickly and boldly and notice what happens to your energy level. Lay on the couch watching TV and notice your energy and vigor fading from your body.

If you want to be more enthusiastic about your role as a leader, become more active in leading! Decide to study a particular part of your role. Make a point to meet with mentors and others who have gone before you. Read new material that challenges your thinking. Spend more time with your team members — getting more connected to their strengths and their needs. Taking these actions will almost by definition create the enthusiasm you seek. If you sit and wait for it, it will likely never come — or at least you might be waiting a long time.

Want to be more enthused about your leadership role? Get up and take action!