How To Leverage Your Default Setting To Reduce Pressure

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In leadership, your ability to thrive under pressure is determined by the clarity of your default setting.

Your default setting is a short, punchy summation of who it is you want to be as a leader, and how it is that you want to lead in any given situation.

What kind of default setting do you want to have? To a great degree, you can influence and even determine your own default setting. You can hard-wire your leadership such that, when the pressure is on, you will respond in a way that brings out the very best in your leadership.

Here are three guiding principles that can help you in the establishment of your own leadership default setting…

1. Make it concise

Craft a default setting that is memorable, and can easily be brought to mind.

As an example, I borrowed my own default setting from the pages of the Bible. As a person of faith, I try to align my own leadership with the teachings of Scripture. And it is here that I have appropriated my default setting, from the book of 1st Corinthians, 10:24:

“No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.”

When I find myself in a leadership pinch, I revert to this verse and ask myself, “What call do I need to make that is consistent with this principle?”

As you craft your own statement, keep it short, punchy, and memorable.

2. Make it consistent

Much of the power of your default setting is found in its ability to guide your leadership in each and every situation.

As you craft your statement, make sure it reflects what you want to be true about your leadership no matter what the circumstances, time and time again.

3. Make it courageous

The most powerful, and effective, default setting will require the very best of you. It will propel you to the loftiest heights of leadership impact.

And it will most certainly involve sacrifice. Don’t shrink back. Adopt a default setting for which you are willing to commit the very best of your time and energy.

Take time in the preparation of your default setting. Reflect deeply. Process thoughtfully. And, when you’re ready, commit it to paper. Place it where you can see it.  Consider it daily.

And let it guide you to become the leader you have always aspired to be.

the author

Scott Cochrane

Lifelong learner, practitioner and coach of leadership, across more than 50 countries. Follower of Jesus, husband of Nora, grateful parent and grandparent.

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