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    Quarterly Unstuck Church Report

by Ryan Stigile, The Unstuck Group

Everyone who lacks self-awareness has one thing in common: They don’t know that they need to be more self-aware. In fact, I’ve never heard anyone say, “I really need to work on my self-awareness!” So if people who aren’t self-aware don’t know that they are not self-aware, how can we know the ways in which we need to grow?

The truth is that we all have gaps in our personal leadership. Some of those gaps can be embarrassing. Some of them create tension with others. Many of them hold us back from making progress. Unfortunately, leaders tend to be the most blind to the problems that are the most personal. It’s very possible that your biggest gap is the one you can’t see!

So if we cannot see our gaps, how can we go about discovering and addressing them? To identify our personal gaps, we have to start by looking out, not in.

The environment around you responds to the gaps within you. By looking out into the environments you lead, you can begin to see the effects of the gaps in your leadership. Simply put, self-awareness begins with environment-awareness.

If you’re interested in growing your self-awareness as a leader, take a moment to assess these three key parts of every environment.

1.  Missed Results

We each have results we’d like to achieve. When we miss them, our natural tendency is to look for excuses outside of ourselves. [“It’s really the team’s fault.” or “I set the goal too high.”] While failure is rarely entirely your fault, it is also rarely none of your fault.

You can’t learn from that which you don’t own. What are your missed results saying about the gaps in your leadership?

2. Passive Feedback

Most leaders think of feedback as direct communication. But feedback can be found in every interaction with every individual. Passive feedback is communicated through body language, tone of voice, and the energy with which people follow-through with decisions.

Your team is constantly giving you passive feedback. How closely are you paying attention to it?

3. Your Emotions

Our emotions serve us much like stop signs. They tell us when to pause and look around more closely. But just like stop signs, too often we roll right through our emotions. When given full attention, they can reveal things that we didn’t before consciously know about ourselves.

What are the emotions that you often roll through? What might they be saying about your own leadership?

As John Maxwell says, “You must know yourself to grow yourself.” But identifying the personal gaps in your leadership is difficult to do through direct observation. Before you look in to assess your leadership, look out to the environment in which you are leading. With clear observations and the courage to be honest, you can trace your missed results, passive feedback, and personal emotions back to a specific way in which you may need to develop. There’s no doubt that you will lead a better team as you begin to better lead yourself.

Photo Credit: Dirk Dallas via Compfight cc

Tony Morgan

Tony is the Founder and Lead Strategist of The Unstuck Group. Started in 2009, The Unstuck Group has served 500 churches throughout the United States and several countries around the world. Previously, Tony served on the senior leadership teams of three rapidly growing churches including NewSpring Church in South Carolina. He has five published books including, The Unstuck Church, and, with Amy Anderson, he hosts The Unstuck Church Podcast which has thousands of listeners each month.

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