Any practical leader will always seek out resources to stay at the top of their game.
It’s an inherent part of their high-achieving nature and the reason why they’ve been so successful.
Like them, you may have already invested tens, if not hundreds of thousands of dollars year after year on executive coaches, consultants, masterminds, coaching programs or even advisors, and yet you’re still looking for more.
I’m going to tell you why that is and what it is you actually need.
First let me tell you about Billions, a show about the power politics on Wall Street and the lives and challenges of various high-achieving leaders.
One of the main characters is Chuck Rhoades, the Attorney General for the state of New York. In one episode, Chuck is dealing with the realization that his marriage, among many other aspects of his life, is on the brink of collapse.
He knows he needs to forcefully change a big part of himself if he wants to salvage his relationship with his wife and prevent any more damage to his powerful position and astute reputation.
So, he seeks out a therapist to help make this change possible.
Before he begins his therapy session, Chuck is asked to keep three important people in mind.
These people, alive or dead, would serve as touchstones through the process, providing a “mental team of support” for Chuck.
“Who would be your protector?”
“Who would be your comforter?”
“Who would be your wise counsel?”
You can see why such a team would be valuable.
Hell, I can see myself conversing with a friend over a nice glass of aged single malt Scotch, thinking about these types of people. Oh, how I’d revel in the wise counsel of Socrates or Aristotle.
Although the above group is undoubtedly important in the life of every leader, what’s also abundantly clear to me given my experience working behind the scenes with men like Chuck is that there’s a fundamental person missing. Somebody all high-achievers need if they’re actually going to realize the change they seek.
However, this person would not be some figment of the imagination. This person would be alive and real serving at the helm of their growth and progress.
I call this person the “eruptor.”
This is a term that I’ve coined myself and can say with absolute confidence because I’ve served in this role for over a decade, continually unleashing powerful leaders and accelerating their success.
That’s because the above three people aren’t sufficient to inspire men like Chuck who need to be challenged and confronted in a very specific way. Therapy sessions and coaching can only go so far and for men like Chuck, they’re just not enough to get the job done right.
Leaders need to actually feel the stress that plagues them rattle from within and be erupted to the surface of their conscious mind so they can see it, face it, and conquer it head on.
For high-powered individuals, there’s no other way to solve their problems or access deeper levels of their own potential than to battle through it in the right way.
Anything else is just a waste of time and resources.
And, as expected, Chuck ultimately left his session early, frustrated and disenchanted with his choice of support.
Now, this doesn’t mean that I’m slighting the noble profession of therapists, consultants and coaches. They all have their place. But, I’ve found that many of them are more focused on plug-and-play tactics without stopping to consider how quickly you need to get where you want to be.
However, when it comes to facing and managing the inner “demons” of powerful leaders, what’s required goes far beyond traditional talk therapy and coaching tactics.
It goes further than asking predictable questions or playing out some fantasy scenario relating to their dilemmas. They need someone who’s equipped to challenge them in a way that only results in exponential growth and progress while also preventing loss.
Unfortunately, though, many high-achievers only seem to learn lessons or decide to pursue real change at the heels of imminent failure.
Many of the most common factors that lead to such failure stem from:
Regardless of the drama or stress you’re experiencing, they’re all what I call “unplanned” eruptions. And they happen more frequently than leaders are comfortable admitting.
In fact, leaders are some of the worst offenders when it comes to suppressing them in the hopes that they’ll disappear on their own.
These eruptions are uncontained and unpredictable. They catch us off-guard and often during our weakest moments, which only activate our egoic, illogical, and protective responses, bringing out our most instinctual defensive selves, which compromises our leadership ability.
But, when eruptions occur in a formalized environment, as it does with me, you can face them head on and resolve them permanently. In exchange, you access a version of yourself that’s no longer restrained by these limitations.
As you gain strength over your weaknesses your results become massively progressive, not regressive.
That’s because these types of eruptions are purposeful and have a solution tied to them.
And it’s only the leaders who truly want to change, who truly want to progress, that walk towards this kind of transformative dynamic.