The transformation of my business, Coleraine Communications, into Leading With Nice represents a journey to a transformative process. This shift aligns closely with the wisdom found in Daniel Liebermans Spellbound and the leadership principles discussed in Simon Walker’s The Undefended Leader. This transformation goes beyond rebranding; it reflects a dedication to principles such as honesty, gratitude, empathy, trust, generosity and prioritizing service. It demonstrates a commitment to fostering connections and conducting business ethically.
In his book, Spellbound, Lieberman explores the powerful workings of the mind. He uncovers how it can effectively handle volumes of information influencing our feelings, instincts and creative ideas.This idea reflects my experience, in the world of business, where planning intersects with the deep, sometimes overlooked, motivations within. My transition towards promoting kindness and empathy in business signifies a departure from profit focused approaches. This change aligns with Lieberman’s concept of integrating contrasting elements and shifting perspectives resonating with the notion of transforming components into something more precious and honorable.
In retrospect, now having read The Undefended Leader, I can see I may have been inspired by Walker’s universal truths and went about out on a journey of self-reflection and readjustment. This path pushed me to step beyond my boundaries embracing roles that required openness and honesty – essential qualities of leadership (I figured). Being an ‘undefended leader’ meant revealing parts of myself that I had previously kept hidden embodying the process of growth and change.
Lieberman’s exploration of the role of the mind in decision making as discussed in Spellbound resonates with my experiences by unveiling perspectives and instructions that are not readily apparent to our conscious awareness. This dynamic interplay, between planning and the subtle influence of our faculties reveals how our conscious mind offers organization and structure while our unconscious mind adds depth, ingenuity and profound insights. It seems clear that guidance of the mind is in line with my principles and convictions.
In the Soul Share podcast Lieberman shares an insight into the purpose of life; to grow our ability to love. This idea perfectly resonates with the philosophy of Leading With Nice. In this context love goes beyond being a feeling; it becomes a guiding principle that influences our choices and interactions. By prioritizing love, empathy and trust we not only challenge business practices but also pave the way for meaningful and significant success. This approach highlights how incorporating these values into our business strategies can lead to transformative outcomes.
The transformation of my business and leadership style has been a journey. It goes beyond adapting to change; it’s fully embracing it and uncovering valuable lessons within challenges. Leading With Nice serves as an example of how empathy, trust and a service oriented mindset can shape the business world resonating with the wisdom found in Spellbound and the transformative spirit advocated in The Undefended Leader.
Moreover, this expedition highlights the significance of self reflection and individual development in leadership. The Undefended Leader teachings underscore the notion that genuine strength in leadership stems from recognizing and confronting one’s vulnerabilities instead of concealing them. This concept aligns with Lieberman’s exploration of the subconscious mind in Spellbound, proposing that by comprehending our underlying motivations and fears, we can lead with greater efficiency and authenticity.
In my experience, combined with the insights shared by Lieberman in Spellbound and the principles outlined in The Undefended Leader, I have come to realize a truth; the success of leadership and business is deeply intertwined with our inner psychological processes. By comprehending and aligning ourselves with our motivations and values as well as embracing vulnerability and openness we have the power to not only transform our businesses but also ourselves.
This transformation leads to a fulfilling and meaningful existence. Such harmony allows leaders to navigate the complexities of business with a renewed sense of purpose and clarity demonstrating that genuine leadership goes beyond achievements – it encompasses leading with empathy, intellect and passion.
1. Daniel Z. Lieberman, “Spellbound: Modern Science, Ancient Magic, and the Hidden Potential of the Unconscious Mind” (New York: Random House, 2021); Simon P. Walker, “The Undefended Leader” (Gloucester: Piquant Editions, 2010).
2. Lieberman, “Spellbound” page 150
3. Ibid. page 152
4. Walker, “The Undefended Leader” page 68
5. Lieberman, “Spellbound” page 155
6. Daniel Lieberman, interview by Positive Head, “Soul-Share” podcast, audio, February 23, 2023, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YnWFlmqmbms.
7. Lieberman, “Spellbound“; Walker, “The Undefended Leader”
8. Ibid. page 156
How I used AI in this post
- I listened to the podcast but wanted to see the words so I could read a few sections without having to go back and try and click around to find what I wanted. The podcast was on YouTube so I copied the transcript and pasted it into GPT, the formatting was horrible. I asked it to give me a clean output, formatted well between two time stamps. It gave me a nice clean output of only the parts I wanted so I could reference it while I was writing
- I wanted to reflect on my own change but wasn’t sure how to tell the story without it becoming the whole blog post and not referencing Spellbound and The Undefended Leader like I wanted to. The first draft of this post I was 350 words in and hadn’t mentioned either resource. I input into GPT that I wanted to become more concise in how I relate my story (I pated what I had written in) and then I summarized the points from the two books I wanted to write. Then I asked GPT to ask me some questions to help me focus my writing and include the resources. These are the questions it asked me:
- In the process of shifting your business focus during the pandemic, did you experience a personal or professional transformation that you could liken to the alchemical process of turning a ‘base’ situation into something ‘noble’ or more valuable?
- How might the symbolic aspects of alchemy, such as the transformation and unification of opposites, relate to your journey in reconciling different aspects of your business and personal growth?
- How did the principles of vulnerability and open leadership, as might be discussed in “The Undefended Leader,” play a role in your decision-making process during this challenging time?
- And finally, I always ask it for help when writing headlines. I did the same this time. My original idea for a headline was “Leading with Alchemy: Embracing Love and the Unconscious in Business Transformation”