Mobius Monthly Newsletter

January 2019

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Dear Friends,

Welcome to the first newsletter of 2019. We hope the start of a fresh year has you in good spirits, forward-looking and hopeful about the months to come. 

We are happy to share with you our January top three list of new thought leadership in the field of transformational leadership and organizational change. To start the year, we feature a recent article on the power of self-compassion (vs self-confidence); a wonderful animation to both simplify and expand our understanding of systems thinking; and an article on why 2019 is a great year to deepen our understanding of adult development from Mobius Senior Expert on complexity and adult development, author, and Next Practice Institute faculty member, Jennifer Garvey Berger.

We hope you had the opportunity to explore the rich collection of books from Mobius experts, colleagues and friends which we featured at the end of last year. The issue remains available online here. We welcome you to read and share these materials with friends and colleagues. 

For everyone planning on being with us this year at the Next Practice Institute, do hold December 8th-13th in your diaries. More to follow on this year’s program in the weeks ahead.

 Warmest best, 

Chief Executive Officer,  Mobius Executive Leadership 


Why Self-Compassion Beats Self-Confidence

Resilience may be the most remarkable benefit of self-compassion

We recommend this New York Times article. It offers a comprehensive round up of the research into both self-compassion and self-confidence – what both can offer us (and the leaders we seek to develop and serve) and the trade-offs of focusing too much energy on projecting our most confident selves. The author concludes that while there are some benefits to “faking it ‘till you make it” as a confidence tactic, there are also real costs associated with that. Self-compassion, on the other hand, is linked to greater resilience; more realistic appraisal of your own abilities and limitations; a growth mindset; less rumination and depressive lines of thinking; greater propensity to apologize and own one’s mistakes; and greater empathy. Whereas self-confidence has many of us trying to mask our true selves.

Why 2019 is a great year to deepen our understanding of adult development

More of us need to be resisting the simplistic solutions our bodies and brains and societies conspire to serve us, such as Brexit or the Wall

Important blog this month from Mobius Senior Expert on adult development and complexity, Jennifer Garvey Berger on why adult development matters so much in the coming year and what you can do to deepen your commitment to your own path along it. Jennifer’s article includes a 5-minute video on the stages of adult development (from the magical realm of childhood imagining to the self-sovereign world where we find ourselves alone, to more advanced stages) -- deepening our understanding and the language we use with clients and others to describe this human journey. She also shares a deeper dive into the more advanced stages of adult development with a talk from Harvard Professor of Adult Development and Professional Development and Mobius Senior Expert on adult development, Bob Kegan. We are thrilled to confirm Jennifer re-joins the faculty for this year’s Next Practice Institute.

What are we talking about when we talk about systems thinking

Demystifying systems thinking by deconstructing LOVE as an example of a complex system

Developing leaders fit for today’s complex challenges or indeed equipping anyone to create more positive outcomes within the systems within which we interact each and every day, is core to our work as leadership practitioners. But systems thinking can be hard to explain in a concrete and straight-forward way. And so over the course of this year we’re sharing bite-sized forays into what we mean when we talk about systems thinking and what, in very practical terms, you can do to intervene in systems more powerfully and positively.  This month’s 5 minute video takes LOVE as an example of a system to illustrate several foundational principles: what do systems thinkers mean when they talk about inflows and outflows, balancing feedback loops and how actions trigger unintended consequences. Each of these principles is central to understanding the organizations, the families, the world – that is, the systems – all around us.


Please visit our website for the calendar of upcoming learning events and other professional development opportunities. 


Please contact our editor, Nathalie Hourihan, if you’d like to suggest a topic or materials for future editions of the newsletter. 

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