AJ Crabill shared a powerful story with me where he thought he wasn’t measuring up and had a moment of cowardice. I thought this was actually a moment of profound bravery because he faced the people that helped him get elected and admitted that he wasn’t performing at his fullest capacity. This also helped him realize that he had to change his mindset and stay committed to the school board and those he was accountable to. This awakened a realization that has blossomed into a beautiful teaching he champions to the masses and wrote about in his book that was just released last month.
AJ taught us on this podcast episode that there are three major drivers to adult change: mindset, knowledge, and skill; with the most important being mindset. When AJ talked about how he learned the value of school boards, he didn’t gain any new knowledge or skills, but he shifted his mindset in a way that unlocked his knowledge and allowed his skill to shine in new ways. This is what happens when we harness our mindset in the proper direction, we allow our knowledge to grow and flow out to those around us in powerful ways, and we can more fully utilize and share our skills with our teams in novel and innovative ways. When we find ourselves bogged down or negative, we need to reflect on our mindset and do some introspection on how our knowledge and skills are being fully embraced by ourselves and those around us. We also need to think about how we harness the knowledge and skills of others.
Diversity is one of the greatest gifts we can have because it allows us to challenge our mindsets constantly. This gift only works when we create environments of inclusion and equality that are founded on psychological safety. AJ says that when we become a leader we take on the mantle of representing the voices of everyone, not just the voices we agree with. If our mindset is not being challenged, then our knowledge and skills are not being sharpened continuously and we are missing opportunities to help everyone become the best version of themselves – including ourselves.
Listen on Spotify to more great insights from AJ at https://open.spotify.com/episode/1k9iwerLrf2UEacgb9nfm6?si=QYNx3wQkQt61DJ7v5S29tA