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Mindful Leadership

Never Underestimate the Power of a Group of Mindful Leaders

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“Sustainable Man” has produced a great 5 minute video entitled “How Wolves Change Rivers”.  It is an amazing story about how the reintroduction of a small number of wolves into Yellowstone National Park in 1995, inadvertently and unexpectedly, transformed the eco system, in less than 10 years.  The wolves were initially brought into the park to control the deer population.  Wolves do kill some animals, but the kind of benefit that occurred could not have been predicted.  Here is the link:


You may wonder what in the world this all has to do with Mindful leadership.  In watching the video I was reminded of the potential impact of Mindful leadership and its far reaching effects.  A small group of Mindful leaders can make a big difference.  As I watched the wolves, what came to mind was how deliberate and organized they were.   They set out to do what their nature led them to do.  And even a small number had an amazing impact on a huge geographic area.  Their behaviour had consequences beyond what anyone might have expected.

And that is what happens when a Mindful leader leads.  By being fully present and aware, regardless of circumstances, anyone who comes in contact with that person is positively impacted.  As a recipient of this leadership, one is able to perform beyond one’s expectations.  Then that same courtesy is extended to others: clients, colleagues, subordinates, etc.  It has a cascading effect that then has the same behaviour circle back.  In fact, it becomes the only acceptable way to behave.  There is a certain self regulation that eventually and naturally occurs.

This applies whether we are in an organization, a family, a community, indeed, anywhere where Mindful leadership is exhibited.  The impact of one Mindful leader is far reaching.  When are are treated in a particular way at work, we bring that experience to our commute, and then home, and then back to work.  You can see that when treated poorly, it infects everything.  When treated Mindfully, it is contagious, as well, in a good way.

Now imagine if an organization, family or community had many Mindful leaders.  Imagine the impact it could have.  No differently than the wolves that changed the eco system of Yellowstone National Park, many Mindful leaders, even if they are relatively small in numbers, could make big changes.

Now let’s imagine further, if we had several organizations with many Mindful leaders…  You get the idea.  Never underestimate how much power you possess as a Mindful leader.

(I would like to thank Sharon Sutcliffe for the wonderful video)


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