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From the March 2019 BAL Newsletter

We ALL want to be admired… and most of us will make all kinds of compromises to be admired. Why will we readily give up so much of our self-expression and so much integrity to gain admiration? Does admiration really equal “leader?”

Don’t be too quick with your “not me’s”… really look for yourself. What about the world around us – how much do we demand that our leaders be admirable? Perhaps most might agree we have a crisis of leadership in the world today, and maybe this paradox is contributing to the lack of leadership.

Slide 546 of the Leadership Course says it perfectly…

We all want to be admired, and almost none of us is willing to confront just how much we want to be admired, and how readily we will fudge on being straightforward and completely honest in a situation where we perceive doing so threatens us with a loss of admiration. […]

Slide 546

One of the newsletter team (who’ll remain nameless to protect the not-so-innocent) shared how dating is ALL about being admired (or at least, somewhat desirable). On-the-court, this looks like spending hours deciding on things, such as which photos to use for a profile, how to answer those profile questions (i.e., fudge or exaggerate), what to wear (be comfortable, or look good)… The list is endless!! AND it is all about being admired so as to get something or somewhere.

The slide continues…

[…] admiration is the highest coin in the realm. We will do anything to be admired and the loss of authenticity seems a small price to pay, especially when you don’t even notice that you are being inauthentic and even if you did, are unaware that being inauthentic costs you being whole and complete as a person. 

Slide 546

As a team, we noticed that we don’t connect the drive for being admired, to being inauthentic – let alone not being whole and complete as a person! Back to our dating team member… on which date is being authentic more important than being admired… The 2nd? the 3rd? the 5th?… When is it safe to be ourselves – and still get what we want?

In which relationship or situation is being admired, NOT being authentic, the coin of your realm? 

It gets worse… what about loyalty…? 

We also all want to be seen by our colleagues as being loyal, protesting that loyalty is a virtue even in situations where the truth is that we are acting “loyal”solely to avoid the loss of admiration. And, in such situations, how ready we are to sacrifice our authenticity to maintain the pretense of being loyal, when the truth is that we are “being loyal” only because we fear losing the admiration of our colleagues.

Slide 547

Another team member could see this immediately in situations in which things go unaddressed, or even get covered up… in the name of being loyal. The fear is, if the thing was called out, it would be seen as a lack of loyalty… admiration would be lost, and therefore, cost the relationship.

Is there a relationship or situation where you are pretending loyalty… to avoid the loss of admiration… or the consequences that you imagine would ensue? 

SO… we sell out our authenticity to be admired and to be known as a loyal friend, manager, co-worker, etc…. GOT IT!

AND as Slide 542 points out…

Without authenticity you can forget about being a leader. Authenticity is being and acting consistent with who you hold yourself out to be for others, and who you hold yourself to be for yourself. When leading, being authentic leaves you grounded, and able to be straight with yourself, and straight with others without using force.

Slide 542

Authenticity is one of the four foundational factors of leadership, AND people often pay a HIGH price to be authentic in the world today. Authenticity is not always met with praise or agreement. Being authentic will not always make you popular, and for sure not always admired.

Back to our dating team member… maybe being authentic won’t get as many dates but I bet the ones they have will be more fun!!!