Antifragility starts from within

Tree Roots

Becoming antifragile is not just about learning how to cope with change but knowing how to use change to become stronger.

This means learning how to manage and to lead ourselves differently, proactively — so that every setback (and success) clarifies our intention, reinforces our enthusiasm, and increases our ability to achieve our goals. 

Management is about controlling actions. It’s about measuring what we did yesterday, making sure we spend time on what is important today, and looking out for the issues that might arise tomorrow. The focus of management is outwards.

But before management comes leadership. Before we take action we must first decide what to do. And the greatest leaders have no one else to tell them what to do. Great leadership, ultimately, requires us to look inwards.

Leadership is about choosing what is important and inspiring ourselves and other people to do what needs to be done.

This means the first step of becoming antifragile is both deceptively simple and incredibly important.

The first step to becoming antifragile is our ability to bring ourselves back to a state of calm inner balance and connect strongly with who we are and what matters most to us.

This lays the foundation for everything else that follows.

Like the roots of a tree, the deeper we can build this connection the better we will be able to survive droughts and remain upright during storms. And when times are calm, the depth of our inner ‘roots’ will determine how far we are able to spread the branches of our influence out into wider challenges and roles.

The first step to becoming antifragile is to look inwards: to centre, and ground, and send your roots out deep and wide.

In a crisis, how quickly are you currently able to return to a state of calm inner balance and connect strongly with what matters most to you? How easy do you find it to choose your priorities? Is it worth spending time to deepen your roots and strengthen your connection with yourself?

Adapted from Inner Leadership: a framework and tools for building inspiration in times of change.

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