Here’s how I’m surrendering at our team retreat

January 8, 2024

In my commitment to leading a thriving team, this year I’m exploring what it means to surrender within my role as CEO (surrender is my word of the year - as I wrote about last Monday). 

This week, I’m with my team in Hawai’i for our winter retreat and I’m practicing surrendering in the following ways: 

  • Sharing facilitation of the retreat. In fact, I’m facilitating very little of it! Sometimes it’s hard for me to hand over facilitation to others, but I trust the skillsets of my teammates who are facilitating. It’s a relief not to have to hold it all. 
  • Trusting the process and releasing attachment to the outcomes. We may or may not stick to the agenda. We may or may not get everything done that we intend to. Our team gathers to connect, to deepen our understanding of our leadership model and to practice being together in all the ways–including through tension and conflict. And so if we veer off the agenda, I’ll let go and trust that it’ll take us somewhere meaningful. 
  • Disconnecting my sense of self-worth from my role as the boss. My worthiness as a human is not contingent upon my work. This doesn’t mean that I’m not responsible for the way I show up or for holding the overall space for the retreat; it means that my inner critic gets to be on vacation (or in therapy) while I’m at this retreat. I’m surrendering to my full humanity, which means I don’t have to be perfect. I have to be self-aware, but not perfect. 

Leading is hard work. Being human is hard. Both require so much self-awareness and understanding, and so much skill. I’ve been working on all of this for years and it feels like it’s paying off. I can see the impact of all that struggle and learning. 

How are you feeling about your leadership? How are you hoping to grow this year? 

I hope this year is off to a meaningful start for you, even if that’s just the result of identifying your aspirations for your own growth.

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