Tuesday, December 25, 2007

All is Calm - an Important Element of Quiet Leadership

Today is Christmas Day and amongst the festivities, song, eating, and conversation, the phrase "All is Calm" as heard in the Christmas classic "Silent Night" came to mind and took special meaning as I awoke this morning.

Calmness is an essential element of quiet leadership. No words validate the importance of calm better or more beautifully than the words of James Allen in his 1902 classic As a Man Thinketh. Please enjoy.

CALMNESS of mind is one of the beautiful jewels of wisdom. It is the result of long and patient effort in self-control. Its presence is an indication of ripened experience, and of a more than ordinary knowledge of the laws and operations of thought.

A man becomes calm in the measure that he understands himself as a thought evolved being, for such knowledge necessitates the understanding of others as the result of thought, and as he develops a right understanding, and sees more and more clearly the internal relations of things by the action of cause and effect he ceases to fuss and fume and worry and grieve, and remains poised, steadfast, serene.

The calm man, having learned how to govern himself, knows how to adapt himself to others; and they, in turn, reverence his spiritual strength, and feel that they can learn of him and rely upon him. The more tranquil a man becomes, the greater is his success, his influence, his power for good. Even the ordinary trader will find his business prosperity increase as he develops a greater self-control and equanimity, for people will always prefer to deal with a man whose demeanour is strongly equable.

The strong, calm man is always loved and revered. He is like a shade-giving tree in a thirsty land, or a sheltering rock in a storm. "Who does not love a tranquil heart, a sweet-tempered, balanced life? It does not matter whether it rains or shines, or what changes come to those possessing these blessings, for they are always sweet, serene, and calm. That exquisite poise of character, which we call serenity is the last lesson of culture, the fruitage of the soul. It is precious as wisdom, more to be desired than gold--yea, than even fine gold. How insignificant mere money seeking looks in comparison with a serene life--a life that dwells in the ocean of Truth, beneath the waves, beyond the reach of tempests, in the Eternal Calm!

The full text of As a Man Thinketh can be read or downloaded from the Gutenberg Project. It's classic text is timeless. My only recommendation is to look beyond the male gender specificity of the words or optionally consider As A Woman Thinketh

Thanks for reading. Please lead quietly.

Merry Christmas,

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