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Walking as Leader

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the meaning of leadership. Remembering back to the 2017 fires in north California when my mother got evacuated and came to live with me; while feeling like we were also on the verge of being evacuated, I felt afraid and wanting up to date, clear information. I found the Sonoma Sheriff on facebook. As a collective group of leaders from different departments including, CalFire, CHP, Sonoma Sheriff (to name a few), they gave updates 2x daily, each person in turn reporting on what they knew and what was being done. I felt comforted by clear, opinion free, drama free information.

What does it mean to be a leader? I think we are all leaders. Leaders of agencies, leaders of families, leaders of communities, leaders within groups and organizations, leaders of our own self behavior. Each definition of leadership may vary within the differing context.

Each one of us has the capacity and opportunity to make choices every day about how to be in the world, making the decision of how we want to represent ourselves for those we love and our larger community. Isn’t this leadership?

For myself, this always circles back to me and trusting how I feel and what I know, in spite of all the noise from others. Everybody has opinions – that are just right for them. When I allow myself to get sidetracked by what someone else thinks I “should” do, I get separated from myself.

Sorting and sifting through information may take time, but it is an offering to me and those I love that gets me on solid ground.

Walking is the place I lose myself and find myself. It may not solve all my “problems,” but it definitely realigns my center. It is where I live in the moments where I connect with some small experience and unknowingly let go of the angst in my brain and breathe in the calm of kinship.

When I am centered, I am leader. I offer myself and my family rootedness, rationale, ease. I may not have the “answer,” but the answer is a bit like the truth; it’s in the eye of the beholder. For now, I bring calm to the storm around me. You bring calm to the storm around you. We bring calm to the storm around us. We are leaders. Let us walk together.