How do you influence others or have an impact on them?
When you come into a room, do you know if the people present raise their eyes or look down at their shoes? What are the signs that inform you of your impact? How are you really perceived – do you know it?
What are you the emblem or the sign of, in spite of yourself?
All of this was taught to me by animals and trees.
Thanks to my connection with the animal world – horses, elephants, whales, and dolphins – I have relearned then modeled situations that enable everyone to progress on their Natural Leadership. By Natural Leadership, I mean the leadership that you would naturally produce if you became aware of the impact of certain of your attitudes. For instance, your non-verbal body language, your presence and your posture (which are not dictated by the desire to be loved or appreciated by others). These postures or attitudes will develop what is called natural charisma.
Three big functions in Natural Leadership can be found in all gregarious species (those that live in groups).
1. Transmission associated with the wise. Nowadays, it seems obvious that to control knowledge and consciousness is illusory, and that the performance of a group increases with its capacity to share knowledge. Those who are wise focus on the development of others and mastery (masters pass on knowledge and experience) rather than on control and expertise (the accumulation of knowledge).
2. Protection associated with those who dominate. The dominants are protected and supported by the group (not only because they are feared or respected) because they will risk their lives to defend and protect the group. The dominants are strong and stable.
3. Nourishing associated with predators and hunters. These hunter-gatherers develop the capacity to nourish and enrich themselves through the survival process. They are agile and adaptable.
How many of you realize that we have separated from nature too soon? Like a child that would have been weaned off his mother too soon. I believe that we have not been aware of what we were doing. We act as if we weren’t ready for this separation, and its impact on our emotional register is huge. I am talking about an emotional deficit. It is difficult to find one’s balance without a strong connection to nature!
Why use the horse as a guide on your journey of questioning? The horse offers a powerful mirror-effect and an astounding space for experimentation. The horse speeds up the access,
rediscovery, and emergence of the potential that a person or a group can deploy in order to reach an intended goal. This approach enables a fast and concrete evolution of the participants, the durability and especially the implementation of awareness within a company. Horses have survived since the dawn of time thanks to their emotional command. They can feel your emotions and your heart rate to know whether you are in “predator” mode. They are preys and they know it. We are predators, but we do not always realize it. The horse is a natural follower… and he is looking for natural leaders! He seeks love, language (to foster exchange) and leadership. If you supply this, horses feel better and safe… like the majority of human beings!
Equicoaching (Horse coaching) provides precious help in understanding the instinctive and intuitive modes of understanding, which are essential in today’s and tomorrow’s management.
The Natural Leadership approach with whales and dolphins enables us to develop the emotional consciousness of “us”, of the collective, of the close and deep relationship that forms between us and them. It brings us back to the present moment’s pleasure of playing
Sylvotherapy (Tree hugging), which I have been practicing for around thirty years, has brought me calm and serenity, as well as openness to the non-visible and non-audible world. To gain this type of access requires to have space and time within yourself. The Japanese call this forest-bath “Shirin-Yoku”. This traditional custom consists in immersing oneself in nature and honing one’s senses through contact with the forest; it consists in becoming aware of space and time, of the necessary calm to make decisions and of the power of the trees. It helped me find my balance. Our entire world is based on acceleration, speed, the Fast-mode. To access the trees, one must be in the Slow-mode. Slow talk, and ideally little or no thoughts. You must be attentive to your inner being in order to be in contact with nature and its elements. This approach gives you access to your inner spirituality, your inner master.
In each of us, there is a Leader, for one activity or another, for oneself or for others. A leader of opinions, of expertise or actions, a charismatic leader, etc. By developing your Emotional Intelligence, you can also intensify your Natural Leadership. The relationships you have with others, especially the physical and mental over-positioning and underpositioning will inform you about your Natural Leadership level. Overpositioning manifests as excessive control (too close, no delegation) and as a lack of confidence in oneself and others. It can develop into arrogance and condescension. Under-positioning manifests as effacement or a lack of involvement (too far, lack of presence) that appears as disinterest, feelings of fear or shame. It can maintain shyness and uneasiness in the company of others.
Your intentions’ lack of clarity also gives away a deficit in Natural Leadership. To progress on your Natural Leadership, you could ask others how they perceive your ability to lead a group, to influence ideas or people, to obtain what you want. Ask them what they would do, if they were you, to make progress in this area. Keep one or two ideas to carry out. Do it, and if other ideas are interesting, implement them. You could also ask other people, who have more expertise in this area or are masters who are willing to teach you, what would be right for you to do. Advice is only binding if you listen to it.
To advance, you can also try out Equicoaching (Care through connecting with horses), Sylvotherapy, meditation, public speaking, theater, dance, or other performance arts. All of this is only an opportunity for you to discover yourself while being attentive to your emotions
and thoughts so as to learn how to calm them.
And finally, I will tell you about an activity we created over the past 5 years around Elephant-Coaching – Developing one’s power by accepting one’s vulnerability through contact with elephants. Through contact with these giants, you quickly understand what vulnerability is, and thereby what power is. Vulnerability is indeed the doorway to power. It is the space, the interior limit of the feeling of lack of control, of isolation and of one’s deep wounds. Acceptance of this fragility is the opportunity to finally build on a tangible base. Through contact with elephants, you relearn how to be vulnerable, naked and ready to bring forth an untapped part of yourself. Elephants teach you how to harness your fears and your helplessness to develop courage and personal power. Elephants are gifted with empathy and have a limbic system that, like ours, is very developed. This greatly facilitates our connections on an emotional level; like us, thanks to its long-term memory, the elephant also has a databank of other sensory and emotional experiences that enable us to interact more deeply in our shared space and time.
By using these sensory and emotional experiences, participants relearn how to live within the animal or plant world.
People surprise themselves by accepting this singular and unique exchange with oneself and nature. They especially (re)discover and experiment their Natural Leadership.
How could this be of use to you?
You will learn to focus on the expression of your Natural Leadership, your Emotional and Rational Intelligence, your position as a human being. Icing on the cake, you will calm your ego!
You will understand how to develop your impact and influence within a group. How to better listen to your instinct and your intuition to make decisions.
• Imagine how your life would be if you knew how to multiply your efficiency by 10!
• No more regrets, guilty conscience, embarrassing situations…
• Greater self-confidence, a growing professional and personal reputation…
• Exceptional achievements that will leave your mark on this Earth…
You, too, CAN make progress on your potential, your emotional quotient, and develop courage and perseverance.