I made a decision this morning to listen only to people who speak with gravitas. The last couple days I have been watching the news on CBS This Morning. Yesterday Samantha Powers sat with the CBS This Morning hosts, Charlie Rose, Nora O’Donnell and Gayle King. Ms. Powers is the outgoing US Ambassador to the United Nations. I was struck by Ms. Power’s voice, mannerisms and how carefully she spoke to articulate ideas that were well thought out and clearly intended to support the good of the whole world. She spoke with such gravitas that I hung on her every word.
What do I mean by gravitas? Gravitas is a special aspect of leadership presence that speaks from the deepest, wisest place inside that blends all sides of an issue. It speaks for the good of the whole. Gravitas is the quality of temperance, an integration state of being that bridges opposites between head, heart and soul.
One with gravitas senses the true needs of a situation with the goal of harmony, co-operation and relationship. People who embody gravitas, may come from various sides of an argument and may offer very different solutions to a situation, but they always show respect for all and intent to create harmony. People speaking with gravitas tend to be persuasive because others can sense their intention of harmony and the truth they speak.
In contrast, many people who are interviewed on the news, speak from reactive emotion or heady intellectualism. They usually talk too fast and stumble over words. I can tell the difference between a speaker who exudes gravitas and one who does not. I feel the difference in my body. Gravitas commands attention and respect and calls me to listen and consider. The absence of gravitas in a speaker just scrambles my body energy or my thoughts. I usually can’t understand what they mean because their words either make me unsettled in my gut or don’t go lower than my head.
So, I have decided to listen only to those who speak with gravitas. What if we all just listened and responded only to people who speak with gravitas? I wonder what harmony and relationships we might co-create!
For more ideas on gravitas, look at my gravitas and leadership presence webpage and video.