The following is an extract from Jude’s forthcoming book Leadership Beyond Measure: Profound learning with horses to transform leaders and business.
My driving force
I desire peace in the world. It’s my driving force. Most people want peace even though it doesn’t always look that way. Conflict arises out of unskilled behaviour. When we do not have the skills to be in relationship with people whose opinions differ from ours, we disagree and fight one another.
As a result, we have conflict in our homes, our families, with our friends and at work. At a country level, we have conflict within society and an abuse of power. On a global scale, there is conflict between countries that all want to be the most powerful because they are scared of what might happen if they are not.
More importantly, you have inner conflict. You know the inner voice that tells you that you are not good enough, you can’t do it, people will judge you, and so on? That internal conflict is painful, uses inordinate amounts of energy and prevents you from being who you can truly be. It’s a flag to show you are at the edge of your capabilities as a leader.
Through working with horses, I not only overcame my fear of them, I learned to finely tune my leadership in the process. In particular, I learned how to be in relationship through our differences because horses are quite willing to be clear about what they want. They are less compliant than people and more authentic in every moment.
Reducing the pain of conflict
I want to reduce the pain and stress caused by conflict. If it starts with one individual having the skills to live and work in harmony in the world, then I believe I’ve made a difference. When you expand that to teams, the difference becomes ever greater. We are all change-makers in our way – big or small. Whether you are a corporate leader or an entrepreneur or look after a family, what you do and how you do it has an impact on society.
There are times when fighting for your rights is essential and times when it’s easier to walk away. I want people all over the world to collaborate more successfully, and reduce the fight. Shared leadership and relationship provide an alternative way and we can learn so much from horses about both.
I have a vision of the future where we have the skills to treat each other as human beings. When we look each other in the eye with open hearts, we work together more collaboratively.
We are tribal by nature. We gravitate towards people like us and gather together in work or society based on shared interests and beliefs. Nobody teaches you how to stay when the going gets tough. How do you work things through when opinions are at the opposite ends of the spectrum?
How do you collaborate when you disagree with someone fundamentally?
I’m raising a lot of questions here. They are important for everyone to consider if we are to change the way we engage in differences of opinion. I wish for peace in Syria, Egypt, Nigeria and other places in the world. I wish for peace in your workplace and your homes. Most of all I wish for peace in your heart so you can live and work in harmony with others. Only then will we create peace in the world and put an end to conflict. I hope the skills in this book help you navigate your leadership challenges more effortlessly and peacefully. Working with horses has been instrumental in helping me and my clients to do exactly that.
The Leadership Whisperers help senior leaders develop embodied leadership skills that have a profound impact in business. Through live events and workshops, Jude and Emma partner with horses who provide non-judgmental feedback, enabling clients to identify their strengths and where they get derailed so they can transform themselves into courageous and hugely influential non-verbal communicators.
Our corporate clients report significant results including resolving conflict, cultural change, improving financial performance, increasing sales and individuals gaining promotions.
Start the discussion about leading through uncertainty and find out how we have helped others businesses develop confident leaders
contact us on 0800 170 1810 or +44 7584 248822