How many times have you been wrong? Think about it for a second.

Recently had conflict with someone? What caused it, from your perspective?

What did the other person do that wound you up? Clearly it’s their fault, isn’t it?

What if it wasn’t?

What if you have no idea what happened, but just long for it to not rear its ugly head again.

What if you always assumed that any conflict is 50% of your doing, how would this perspective change the way you relate to it? If you owned this, and expressed it, what would happen?

I’ll give you an example. Ever had a member of your team not do what you asked them to do and the blamed them 100%:

– “they never listen”
– “nobody does it better than I do, might as well do it myself”
– “no, I said do it THIS way, for god’s sake, how many times have I got to tell you!”

Sound familiar.

What if, before any of these reactions, rather than be 100% outer-directed you paused, caught the emotional reaction, and asked yourself:

“Hmmmm, this has happened again, what’s my part in this?”

What if you got curious and had a look at what comes up?

Chances are your part of the puzzle could be that you didn’t delegate properly (I have a simple four-step process for this that works each and every time, will share in a later article)?

Or maybe your team are disengaged and relate to their job as just something that pays the bills rather than an opportunity for them to grow, learn, be part of a vision that excites them, AND the bonus is they get rewarded with money, too.

I was having a chat recently and they said, “There’s no good people out there.” 100% outer-directed.

So I asked, “do you have a clear 3 year vision and clearly defined company values that are a reflection of you, and do you use these values in your recruiting and hiring strategy to attract like-minded people?”.

Silence. Followed by a quiet, “errr, no.”

Can you see how easy it is to be outer-directed, rather than get meta. (above and beyond) to the situation to look at all contributing factors, even if they’re yours?

A lot of people suffer in silence and become serial approval seekers in order to avoid perceived conflict.

I know I have, and at times, still fall into this category. Mainly because conflict hurts. I find it painful. For years I strived to keep the peace, say what others want to hear in order to avoid it. Never wanted to rock the boat or upset the applecart. My default position was to back down, make peace, swallow my truth, sweep it under the carpet and move on – life’s too short to fight, right?


Once I discovered that there’s nothing wrong with healthy conflict my world changed.

Relational problems are caused by what’s NOT said, not what’s said.

Suppressed words never receive the oxygen they strive for, poor things, the vowels, and consonants, are swallowed with ease, y’know to do the right thing, can’t have apples fall off the cart, can we.

Swallowable they may be, but they refuse to be digested. They sit festering, hatching a plan to come out and taste the sweet fresh air, the lust for freedom drives them forward, and the persistent little buggers eventually find a way. You see words are incredible escapologists, shapeshifting into different forms, driven by the magnetic pull of freedom…

It starts with a huff, maybe a puff. A sideways look, the firm pull of a door so it makes a noise, a frown, folded arms…

They have the power, even if they’ve been dormant for a few weeks, months or years, to come out in different forms.

They win, every time.The pesky blighters have even mastered technology. Curt responses to emails, they can even make you ignore responding to them.

What if, rather than trying to swallow them, you set them free. Spoke your truth. Every single time. Imagine a world where everybody spoke their truth, with care, to each other.

Fancy giving it a go? This is what leading is all about.

You can start with baby-steps in any part of your life. If someone asks you how you are, rather than give the stock answer (good, fine, not bad, ok, etc.) take the question in for a minute and respond with truth. Maybe you’re not fine. Maybe you feel sad, a bit lost. Say it, see what happens.

When you care a little less about what others think of you by speaking your truth – showing a healthy level of self-care you deserve – you can then authentically care for others, that’s the deal.

Free the words, the vowels, the consonants, each and every one of them.

Even if you’re not great at articulating yourself, go for it. Practice makes perfect. They can’t be digested and will always find a way out in some other reaction (body language, passive-aggressive behaviour, long-standing grudges, etc) so why put yourself through the pain of trying, giving yourself word-IBS?

Become a free’er of the truth. Of your truth.

Given that change happens from the inside out, and your outer world is a reflection of your inner world, surely this must be worth exploring? If you want to change things.

And, if nothing changes, then nothing changes …

Over time I’ve learnt to be bigger than the fear of being judged by others by speaking my truth.

The saddle soreness of the journey is now bearable, most of the time.

Choose expression, over suppression. You’ll feel better, I promise.

Be authentic. You always have a choice. Lead.

David Foster

#‎leadership #‎businessdevelopment #‎life

Ps. If you’re an entrepreneur looking for help on how to create a business that gives you the life you want, join my free facebook group called meta. entrepreneurs, here’s the link