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Diane Dreher's Tao of Inner Peace Blog

Attitudes and Energies

The Tao Te Ching tells us:


The Tao is the one.

From the one come yin and yang,

Sunlight and shadow,

From these two creative energy,

From energy ten thousand things

The forms of all creation.


                            Tao, Chapter 42.


Unlike the old mechanistic model of organizations where leaders give orders and treat people like replaceable parts, leading with the Tao means focusing on underlying processes, recognizing the energies within and around us.


Much of this involves our attitudes, the subtle energies we communicate in personal interactions. An arrogant and ruthless leader can create a toxic atmosphere while inspirational leaders inspire and empower the people around them.


Research has revealed that interpersonal interactions are emotional energy transactions, producing measurable changes in our brain chemistry, blood pressure, hormone levels, cardiovascular function, and immune systems.[1]


A leader's moods can affect—or infect—an entire organization, influencing productivity, success, and overall corporate health, including the health of the people around them. Egotistical, defensive, and imbalanced leaders can bring chaos to our world.


Because they so powerfully influence the energies around them, leaders are profoundly responsible for balancing the energies within them. Today, more than ever, a commitment to ongoing personal growth is a vital leadership task.


As a leader in your own life, take a moment now to focus on your energies.


  • Are you feeling nervous, anxious, angry? Something else?
  • Where in your body do you feel this energy?
  • Take a deep breath and release it as you name your feelings.
  • Then take another deep breath and release it.
  • Realize that your feelings are energy
  • What energy do you want to feel?
  • Breathe in that energy, that feeling, into your heart.
  • Now imagine yourself expressing that energy in the world around you.
  • And go about your day, more mindful, more present, more aware of the energies within and around you.


I wish you joy on the path.




Goleman, D., Boyatzis, R., & McKee, A. (2001, December). Primal leadership: the hidden driver of great performance. Harvard Business Review, pp. 42-51.


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