Diane Dreher's Tao Leadership Blog

Leadership Begins Within

February 20, 2018

Tags: Tao Te Ching, leadership, Centering Practice

Wise leaders are not reactive. Even in crisis, they maintain their inner balance.

However events may whirl around them,
They remain centered and calm.


Tao Te Ching, Chapter 26

For centuries, the wisdom of the East has taught the lesson of self-mastery. As the Tao tells us:

Analyzing others is knowledge,
Knowing yourself is wisdom.
Managing others requires skill.
Mastering yourself takes inner strength.
. . .
Be present, observe the process.
Stay centered and prevail.


Tao Te Ching, Chapter 33

Wise leaders stay centered in challenging times because of their commitment to a regular centering practice—which can be daily prayer, meditation, or a physical discipline like yoga, tai chi, or the martial arts.

What is your centering practice?

The Strength of Bamboo

February 17, 2018

Tags: Tao Te Ching, leadership, Flexibility

By Hosamwimel - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Wikimedia Commons.
Leaders who follow the Tao have the strength of bamboo. Able to bend, blend with circumstances, adjust to change, and overcome adversity, they can meet any challenge with courage and compassion.

The Tao Te Ching tells us:

The grasses that grow are green and supple.
In death they are withered and sere.
Therefore, the rigid and inflexible
Belong to death.
The gentle and yielding
Are filled with life.


Tao Te Ching, Chapter 76

How can you be more flexible, using the strength of bamboo to meet a current challenge?

Maintaining Your Center

February 16, 2018

Tags: Tao Te Ching, leadership, Centering

In this world of challenge and change, a vital leadership skill is to stay centered, to remember our purpose. The Tao tells us:

Thirty spokes meet at the wheel’s axis;
The center space makes the wheel useful.
Form clay into a cup;
The center space gives it purpose.
Frame doors and windows for a house;
The openings make the house useful.

Therefore, purpose comes from what is there,
Because of what is not there.


Tao Te Ching, Chapter 11

What is Your Vision of Leadership?

February 15, 2018

Tags: Tao Te Ching, leadership, Carl Rogers

What is your vision of leadership? Believing that the best leaders empower others, humanistic psychologist Carl Rogers carried in his wallet this quote from the Tao Te Ching:

Of the best leaders,
People simply know who they are.
The next kind, people follow with admiration.
Worse are those that people fear.
The worst are scorned and ridiculed.

If leaders do not respect their people,
They will not be respected.

With the best of leaders,
When the work is done,
The project completed,
The people all say,
‘We did it ourselves.’


Tao Te Ching, chapter 17

The Tao's Lessons on Leadership for Today

February 14, 2018

Tags: Tao Te Ching, leadership, positive difference

The teaches that nothing exists in isolation, that we are part of an all-inclusive pattern.

It’s apparent from the daily news that we’re experiencing a crisis of leadership in the world around us. We can begin resolving this crisis by claiming the power of leadership within us. Beginning today, I’ll be posting insights from the Tao Te Ching to remind us that we have the power to create new possibilities in our world. For we are all potential leaders, and one step at a time, we can make a positive difference in the world.

A tree that grows beyond your reach
Springs from a tiny seed.
A building more than nine stories high
Begins with a handful of earth.
A journey of a thousand miles
Begins with a single step.


Tao Te Ching, chapter 64


Celebrate creativity--visit my blog on writing and spiritual practice

January 24, 2018

Tags: creative, writing, spiritual practice

Together, we can use our creativity to light the way through the darkness of conflict, crisis, and confusion to create a more hopeful future for all of us.

In response to today's challenges, I'm writing a blog about writing and spiritual practice with my friend, Juan Velasco, a creative writer and Buddhist dharma master. Please click on the link beneath my photo to visit and join this creative community.

I look forward to seeing you there.

In peace,

Diane

Selected Works

Nonfiction
"A most helpful book for finding both your passion and your calling for life."
--Gerald G. Jampolsky, M.D., author of Love Is Letting Go of Fear
Spiritual
"A simple and comprehensive vision of personal and planetary peace...Dreher's examples work as meditations as well as road maps"
--Minneapolis Star Tribune