Self-Leadership – 7 of the Most Important Skills to Master

self-leadership skills

Self-leadership (the act of leading yourself ) has a lot to do with discovering what brings you most alive – and then aligning your life through your thoughts and actions to that aliveness.  Self-Leadership means mastering some essential skills of personal leadership:

1. To Master the personal leadership ability of Responsibility. To take courageously take responsibility for yourself, including your thoughts, speech as well as other observable behaviors. At the same time not to overuse that strength when it comes to taking responsibility for other responsible adults – have the courage just to lift them up and inspire them to lead themselves instead.

2. To master the self-leadership skill of Focus. Focus means being very, very clear what you are saying yes to – and then maintaining focus on those yes’s.     Being very clear on your yes’s also means you are clear on what should not get your attention ever again – and what should not get your attention right now.

3. To master the self-leadership skill of Truth Telling. Truthfulness in personal leadership has a significant connection to being authentic.  It is the authenticity that comes from being congruent with your thinking, your words, and your deeds and then expressing from that congruence.  When you are not aligned in all 3 – It makes it hard to tell the truth.

4. To master the personal leadership skill of Emotional Flexibility.  To have emotional mastery is to have an awareness of what you are feeling and to understand how to feel it entirely – and shift your emotions to serve you.   Things like being able to call on more courage in times as needed or change to a more resourceful emotional state at the drop of a hat – are personal leadership skills.

5. To master the self-leadership skill of Allowing. When you allow more, you will experience more flow.  Allowing means dropping the practice of attempting to control.  Allowing means waiting for the clarity that is needed to take your next right step.

6. To master the self-leadership skill of Personal Presence. Personal presence is a graceful glow that comes from being so true to yourself that you radiate authenticity.  Self-leadership self-confidence, self-esteem, and ability to live in the wonder of the moment are also skills of personal leadership.

7. To master the skill of Empathy: Being able to see and perceptually experience from another’s position.    Empathy is rapport building and even emotionally bonding when empathy is given and received.

Some of the more common barriers to mastering the skills of personal leadership are:

  • Getting caught up in life’s common boxes
  • Caring to the point of care-taking others and attempting to control (or be overly responsible for their actions)
  • Choosing to settle for just being ordinary or average.  You are neither of those, and you deserve  extraordinary
  • Desiring things to stay the same
  • Resisting feeling things – fully or completely
  • Deflecting, over generalizing, or stopping short
  • Exhaustion, apathy, loss of hopefulness

You can bring more self-mastery into your personal leadership skills. It’s very doable. Here are some ways to get there:

  • Expand your practice of being courageous
  • Do what you promise at a minimum. Over-deliver as a practice.
  • Narrow your focus, embracing your passions more and more
  • Expand  your  capacity for giving empathy
  • Raise your standards  ( a lot!)
  • Keep your self-care at a high level
  • Work on expanding your self-awareness

The best way to begin a  personal leadership development plan is just to start; start simply –  focus on a few personal leadership skills at a time.      Walking a  path of improved personal leadership can be a very enjoyable one if you approach it in a light way.


Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are off-topic.

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3 thoughts on “Self-Leadership – 7 of the Most Important Skills to Master

  1. Thank you Anne Preston, it is a great article and has been interestingly helpful in inspiring myself about self leadership. You have managed to provide various unique yet effective advices that are important for long standing career success. With these tips, you have really hit on some of the qualities of places that I have already worked before. Thanks again!

  2. Hello,
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    your post. They are very convincing and will definitely work.
    Still, the posts are too quick for novices. May you please extend them
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