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Professional Development

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Leadership is Magical … Because YOU are Magical

How many books have been written on the topic of leadership? How many lectures/workshops/presentations have you been offered to help you become a "better" leader? How many TED talks have you watched that showed you a three-point plan toward more effective leadership?

It can be overwhelming, can't it?

In my observations of others and in my own experiences and development, I've come to a pretty powerful belief.

I believe that your leadership is simply ... you.

It's you.

But it's you when you are sitting authentically in what's really you.

Not what others tell you you should be

.Not what you do to make yourself look smarter/better/funnier/more creative.

Not when you are practicing a leadership "script."

Not when you are exercising your "authority."

No, that's not you. And so that's not leadership.

But when you sift all that away. When you shed the voices from the outside. When you reach the center of you and figure out who that person is. And then when you share that person with the world ... THAT is leadership. That's your leadership.

And that leadership is magical.

It's magical because there is nothing else like it. There is no one else quite like you.

Author Marilynne Robinson said, "Say that we are a puff of warm breath in a very cold universe. By this kind of reckoning, we are either immeasurably insignificant or we are incalculably precious and interesting. I tend toward the second view."

I tend toward the second view, too. We are incalculably precious and interesting. Incalculably.

So why would we spend even a moment being anything other than our incalculably precious and interesting selves?

You are magical. Do you see that when you look in the mirror? If not, get quiet. Shed the voices. And look again. You are magical.

Don't wait another day to offer that magical self to the world.

There are two reasons this is important.

The first is for you, and the second is for everyone else.

First, for you. You are who you are for a reason. What a relief it is to just give in to that. To allow that. Life is too short to wear someone else's rules or expectations, you know?

Second, for everyone else. You are who you are for a reason. And it goes beyond you. I guarantee you there is at least one person out there that needs to see your version of leadership, and there are probably way more than one. People that are struggling to let their authentic selves shine and need a lighthouse. Need a touchstone. You have the chance to be that. You have an obligation to be that. And here's the thing: Lighthouses don't ever know how many ships they help; they just help. They trust that their light is a gift for the sea. Your light is a gift, whether you ever know exactly how or not.

When you are you, you are a gift. It's that simple.

How can you step into your magical leadership today?

Currently a speaker, author, educator, blogger and mother, Erika Petrelli has been in the field of education for more than fifteen years. She currently exercises her dynamic education experience as Senior Vice President of Leadership Development and self-proclaimed Minister of Mischief at The Leadership Program.