The Curious Leader
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The Curious Leader

Can a Legacy Be Meaningful Without Self-Knowledge?

You and I both know that pretending to have all the right answers will never bring us the emotional fulfillment we so desire. Real change comes from…

Sitting in a classroom at The Authentic Speaker Academy For Leaders, I nervously glanced at the leadership principles our mentor, Dov Baron, had shared. One leadership principle particularly stood out: “All Meaning is Subjective. Nothing has any meaning beyond the meaning we give it.”

I swallowed hard. I did not emotionally understand what that leadership principle meant to me, and I was afraid to look incompetent if my lack of emotional maturity was discovered. I tried to hide my discomfort by emotionally shutting down and intellectually pretending I knew the right answer. Can you relate?

What Emotionally Drives You?

The conversation continued at a deeper level. Gently coaxing me to become more honest with myself, Dov asked me to talk about my childhood, my past marriage, my children, my business, etc.

Feeling my heart sinking into my gut, I angrily thought, What the hell does that have to do with anything? In hindsight, I may have closed up and reacted defensively.

Dov’s follow-up question was, “What’s the emotional undercurrent driving your decisions?”

Who Are You Beyond The Facade?

I grew up in a household where I had to pretend I knew all the right answers if I wanted to survive. For me, it was all about the facade. Have you ever felt that way?

What’s the Difference Between Your Wants and Your Needs?

Sensing my distress, Dov compassionately asked, “What do you need right now?” I answered his question with a long list of wants.

Dov paused, then patiently explained that a want is usually externally driven; it’s us telling ourselves, I should want that. But a need is emotionally felt; it is driven by feelings.

For example, we might say that we want a glass of water right now, but the need to drink water is to quench our thirst (a feeling). Other examples of needs include the need to be heard and the need to belong.

Though we may have a long list of wants, our needs usually come down to one or two feelings, like the ones I’ve just mentioned above. What’s your recurrent theme? What are the one or two feelings you’re consistently looking to experience?

What Do You Really Need?

Giving ourselves what we need, so we can experience more of what we want, requires that we keep feeling into the emotional undercurrent of our decisions — what makes us do what we do — so we can make better decisions. For all of us, this is where the rubber meets the road; we only know what we are living.

I asked Dov to mentor me regularly. There was a lot of hidden pain that needed to be alleviated. Because I did not know how to do it by myself, asking for help was the way to start the healing process.

Can a Legacy Be Meaningful Without Self-Knowledge?

We’ve seen the news. There’s a lot of talk these days about legacy and creating a legacy. What do you want your legacy to be?

Do you want your legacy to be a long list of things you’ve accumulated based on your wants?

Or are you looking to create a more meaningful legacy that can only be discovered through self-knowledge and developing higher levels of Emotional Intelligence?

If you choose to create a more meaningful legacy, you must be willing to feel into your answers to the following questions:

➡️ What emotionally drives you?

➡️ Who are you beyond the facade?

➡️ What’s the difference between your wants and your needs?

➡️ What do you really need?

➡️ Who’s going to get you there?

I’m asking because … No One Does It Alone.

You and I both know that pretending to have all the right answers will never bring us the emotional fulfillment we so desire. Real change comes from investing in our healing by having a genuine accountability partner with a profoundly practical, emotionally intelligent process that challenges what we think our legacy is to show us how to bring more meaning into our lives.

Who is your genuine accountability partner?

My name is Anne Beaulieu. I show women entrepreneurs how to inspire the next generation of emotionally intelligent and strategic women! Let’s start a conversation here. You can also contact me directly at



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