Making a Fist Often Does not Work

Take a Deep Breath
August 30, 2013
How to use the F Word: part 1
September 13, 2013


If you’re in a position of leadership, do you expect suffering? If not,  why not? Leadership involves stewardship that impacts other people and the worst kind of it digresses in to a power play and power grab. The best kind of it is actually empowering. So, let’s pause to consider the difference.

Leaders who want power tend to cling to power. Leaders who want to share or give away their power, tend to live with open hands. Now, take the two images further. What will it look like for you to live with open hands instead of a closed fist? What are you sharing today and what are you unwilling to share?

Don’t move on, but pause and reflect a bit on the difference.

Closed handed gestures may include clasping a steering wheel or preparing for a fight, but have you ever eaten a meal with a closed fist? I can’t think of any dinner party where  making a fist or holding tight to the utensils profited anyone. I can’t pass the potatoes with a fist; I can’t raise a glass to toast a friend with a fist. I can’t carve the Thanksgiving turkey nor can I put whip cream on pumpkin pie with a fist. I can’t toss a salad nor can I uncork the wine with a fist.

In fact, around the dinner table the only time my hands are closed is when we pause to say evening prayers. And in the grand scheme of things, that’s probably worth reflecting on….


Desmond Tutu on Leadership

1. Servant

2. Suffering

3. Sacrificial

This is how Desmond Tutu describes a good leader. Listen to him explain in his own words in this video:

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