The True Self. Known by many names - the Organic Self, Wise Self, Deep Self. It's the person we know ourselves to be at the deepest, truest level, beneath any strategies or adaptations we took on to be successful or to be loved in this world.
The True Self: Now What?
In the two decades I spent working with individuals in the Hoffman Process, I had the privilege of witnessing the moment of coming to meet and know the True Self in hundreds, even thousands of people. I witnessed the beauty of individuals experiencing, sometimes for the first time, that we are so much more than the self we consciously and unconsciously designed to survive our childhoods and this world. We are deep, pure, alive, radiant, loving and also flawed, imperfect and human. I had the privilege of midwifing all types of people - from CEO’s to delivery drivers, superstar actors, first responders, stay at home parents, and leaders from around the world.
What I know in my bones is that we are all longing for the same things: to love and be loved, to know ourselves deeply, to be in connection with others, and to express who we are, in ways that make a difference. Beyond that we also have individual dreams - to bring something to life in this world - as parents, entrepreneurs, leaders, artists, teachers and creators.
Aurum was created to meet leaders and creators in that moment. The “now what?” moment. As a leader, how do I adjust the way I work? How do I shift the way I lead? How do I reconcile the knowing of my True Self with the way I do business or participate in my community or organization? What does it mean to be an Awakened Leader?
The Integration of Being + Doing
I’ve spent my life with one foot in each place - the world of being and the world of doing. Through doing I’ve accomplished, created, led, and fully lived in the world of organizations, teams, leadership and business. The being parts of my life have been lived through my spiritual path and practice, meditation, my healing journey, and through nature. Both of these are essential to who I am in this world - and both enrich and inform the other. Aurum was born to assist people living and leading in a way that honors and integrates both.
The Aurum Agenda
So, yes, we have an agenda.
And that agenda is bringing individuals and organizations into greater alignment with the deeper versions of themselves. To awaken to the full capacity of their leadership and presence in this world, from a grounded place of the True Self.
How do we run organizations in a way that honors human beings, the planet and a greater good, alongside being profitable and sustainable? As members of these organizations, how do we participate with integrity, creativity, truth and care for others? How do we accomplish truly amazing things?
At Aurum we know in our bones, and our experience, that turning to the more whole versions of ourselves yields fruitful and sustainable solutions.
The new dawn is here - ushered by the human movement toward transformation, healing and awakening to our True Selves. Whether this experience comes through psychedelics, or a personal growth process such as Hoffman, or the innumerable paths that lead to the True Self, we want to know….”now what?” How will you lead? How will you impact this world? What will you create, connected to your True Self? And how does your organization need to shift, to make space for a more enlightened way of working together? What do teams look like, when they embody integrity, courage and compassion?
We’ve spent seven years answering these questions through our coaching and educational programs - from Courageous Communication to the Aurum Management Training, Inner Leadership, Team Vitality Days, Organizational Citizenship programs, and of course our 1:1 coaching. If you’ve been in our programs you know we have always been up to something different. We’ve always been about finding the being in the midst of our doing. We’ve always been about the True Self. It’s the reason we do what we do.
We know your True Self is calling you to live, lead and work in new ways. Not only at work, but in your relationships, community and how you lead. We are here to meet you there. We have expertise in transformational learning, team building, organizational development
Our experience shows us that by honoring our deeper versions, we can create dynamic, profitable, alive and innovative organizations. We can forge genuine connections, and bring about meaningful change in the world.
We are committed to guiding individuals, leaders, and teams toward a more enlightened and purpose-driven existence. Together, let us step into a future where the True Self becomes the compass that leads us to a brighter and more compassionate, alive, equitable and sane world. We call that Awakened Leadership.
In the coming months, we’ll highlight all the domains of the expression of the True Self and what it means to be an Awakened Leader. We’ll expand more fully on what we know about navigating by the compass of our deepest being - at work and in life.
Devi Cavitt Razo
June 28, 2023
Essentials of Self: Breakthrough Training for Leaders
To experience the potency of the True Self Model, join us at Essentials of Self (EOS), a 4-day intensive for growing as a leader, a creator, and as a human being. We offer this program only twice a year - once in the US, and once in Europe - as a public program. This is a rare opportunity to reconnect with your full capacities, and embody Awakened Leadership in your life.
What they don't tell you when you get that promotion...
We often think of leadership as something that is given to us – as a job, a position, a role that gives us permission to lead others. In reality, merely getting the new office or job title rarely provides the secret sauce that creates instant authority and respect. When someone gets promoted or hired into a leadership role, they often focus on their areas of responsibility and the task at hand. But over time, they begin to wonder whether or not they are actually being effective as leaders.
Think of yourself at work, especially when you are new to the role. Do people listen to you? Are your suggestions being respected and followed? Do you get bogged down in itty bitty details? What is your level of stress? Are you always right? Are your team members honest with you about their mistakes and learning?
The answers to these questions aren’t found in your job description. It has nothing to do with being in technology, construction, education or finance, or even your title, but it does have something to do with YOU. What people respond to the most is the quality of your Inner Leadership.
Role-based vs. Inner Leadership
Role-based leadership is the job title and institutional authority that are granted to someone when they are introduced as a leader with a specific scope of responsibility. This leadership role can be given or taken away, and is generally defined by the organization's needs. The role may require certain abilities, but there is no guarantee that you have them.
Inner Leadership, on the other hand, is the domain of who you are as a human being and how you are showing up. It illustrates how you engage with others, and the level of inner authority and authenticity you bring to work. It’s about how much you trust yourself and others, your willingness to learn, find solutions and move forward. These are inner qualities that arise from within you which cannot be given or taken away. However, inner leadership can be actively cultivated and supported - or squashed.
Often we expect or hope the role will magically give us the leadership qualities we know we need. “If I had the title/role/degree I would feel confident” or “If I was the manager, people would listen to me!” While the role may provide a certain institutional authority, it rarely creates inner leadership. For that, we need to do inner work and develop internal, relational skills.
Over many years of leading, training, and coaching, we have distilled a list of the 8 most important elements of Inner Leadership. Focusing your attention on developing any of these areas will dramatically increase your effectiveness, regardless of your role or position.
The Essential Elements of Inner Leadership
1. Know Yourself
Know your strengths. Know your weaknesses. Own both.
Being transparent about both invites others to do the same, increases team cohesion and safety, enhances creativity and invites others to show up fully.
Understand the inside/outside principle and that people will react to your behavior, not your intention.
What we don’t see and own ends up negatively impacting others, our relationships, and our trustworthiness. What we don’t own and talk about, others will - especially in leadership.
2. Embody Authenticity & Integrity
Being authentic and real is compelling. Being in integrity is empowering. Focus on being trustworthy rather than evaluating others.
Do what you say you will do and take responsibility when you don’t.
Say yes, and follow through - or say no, with respect. Honor your agreements, honor other people, and honor your word.
Devi Cavitt Razo and Deepika Sheleff are co-founders of Aurum Leadership. They are also close friends who have dedicated their lives to creating powerful, honest, resilient relationships.