Understanding who you are beneath the façade of your “personality” is the secret to exuding genuine power and the kind executive presence that unlocks the C suite door.

Your outer you is often defined by what you do.  You’re an executive.  A mother or father.  A hard worker.  A runner.  Just like an iceberg, what lies below the waterline is greater than the tiny fraction you see on the surface. It’s the parts you can’t see, touch or label – your guiding values, principles and beliefs – that determine how you show up to the world.

Power and presence come from doing the “inner” work to get in touch with what’s below the waterline so that you can build a sturdy foundation and the life you desire.  Here are five steps to help you achieve that goal.

  1. Know thy self.  Know your WHOLE self.  What motivates you? What draws out your passion?  What shadowy parts of you exists?  The great and the not-so-great parts of you are at work beneath the surface and impact what’s above the waterline.
  2. Trust your guidance and experience.  Your thoughts, ideas, inspirations, sleep time and daytime dreams are telling you something.  Pay attention and act.  Even if you take baby steps, move toward what’s calling you.
  3. Learn through your data center.  Your body provides physical signals that are very revealing.  Your aches and pains.  Your posture.  Are you prone to illness and injury?  It could be nothing, or it could be the manifestation of energy generated by good or bad things in your life.  Be aware.
  4. Live with not “belonging.”  The need to be liked leads to big compromises.  Making the approval of others a priority can actually result in feeling unloved because you’re not honoring yourself.
  5. Have a stand and stand out.  Blame no one for what happens and don’t deny your own responsibility for making your life as you want it to be.

Inner work is a life-long project that ebbs and flows with each situation at work, at home and throughout our entire life.  A commitment to knowing ALL of you helps you gain genuine confidence, credibility and influence – resulting in better opportunities and greater success.

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