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2020 was an unforgettable year. Here at the Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute, we had the opportunity to practice what we preach—to be adaptable, resilient, empathetic and present, even for the tough moments. Though it may be tempting to try to forget the year we just experienced, reflection is essential if we want to learn and grow from our mistakes and our successes. In the spirit of reflection, we’ve gathered our top ten articles from 2020, and we think they capture the challenges and opportunities that last year brought all of us.

1. Emotional Intelligence is Not Optional. The Value of SIY in VUCA Times

As COVID-19 spread around the globe, the world as we know it fundamentally shifted. We saw unprecedented levels of stress, overwhelm, isolation and disconnection. The importance of emotional intelligence has never been more evident. EI supports us in managing our feelings and reactions, helps us relate to colleagues’ emotions in productive ways, builds our capacity for calm, focus and resilience and paves the way to connection and creativity. Read More.

2. The Reality of Online Facilitation + 5 Best Practices

Moving all our programs to the virtual space was one of the challenges we faced at the the Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute this year. SIYLI director Steph Stern shares her thoughts on how the transition to online facilitation went and she offers readers a few tips to create more seamless, meaningful online experiences. Read More

3. The Art of Recharging

When we experience prolonged periods of stress, sleeplessness or overwhelm, we are less productive and more irritable. Rest and recovery are not only essential to building resilience and well-being but rest is also a key ingredient to achieving sustainable high-performance at work and in life. Find out how to integrate rest into your daily life and optimize your longer recovery periods. Read More

4. The Most Needed, but Counter-Intuitive Leadership Skill: Self-Compassion

Self-compassion is often misunderstood as a soft, nice-to-have skill. Modern research disproves this common assumption, showing that it is an essential skill that will help you gain clarity, manage your emotions and improve your leadership.

“Put simply, self-compassion means treating yourself like you would a friend, especially in the face of setbacks, mistakes and failures; it’s an essential strength for resilience. Though counter-intuitive, we believe that self-compassion is a missing ingredient needed for authentic and courageous leadership in today’s world.” Read More

5. 7 Emotional Intelligence Traits Leaders Need in a Time of Crisis

Crisis response requires a thoughtful approach, and leaders who employ these seven Emotional Intelligence traits will face challenges with confidence and resilience.

“Developing emotional intelligence equips leaders with reliable internal resources to exercise in times of increased complexity. There has never been a more extraordinary opportunity to strengthen and apply these vital competencies.” Read More

6. The Power of Resilience

Resilience is not only about bouncing back from adversity; it’s about dealing with disruptive forces while adapting with integrity in response to changing circumstances and thriving. It is a skill that can be deliberately cultivated and developed in the face of chronic negative stress and continuously increasing demands, complexity and change. Read More

7. 5 high-EQ ways to Engage with Employees During a Crisis

For some managers and leaders, it can be a challenge to keep a team engaged and focused. And in a crisis environment, it can be even tougher to keep employees on task, while also meeting them with care.

“In this time of heightened emotions, with unprecedented levels of stress, distraction and disconnection, the need for emotional intelligence is all the more acute right now.” Read More

8. How Building Compassion is Key to Resilience

“According to a 2020 study, only 19% of US workers are highly resilient, and the remaining 81% were considered less resilient and vulnerable to the negative impacts of adversity. ”

A recent study suggests that as little as two weeks of compassion meditation training can alter the way people respond to the suffering of others. Read More

9. Emotional Intelligence for Communities

Our mission at SIYLI is to make mindfulness and emotional intelligence practical and accessible. One way we have been working to fulfill that mission is through community projects in Parkland, Florida, Flint, Michigan, Bhutan and more.

“Our intention is to create lasting systemic change by providing neuroscience-based mindfulness and emotional intelligence skills training. We accomplish this through community partnerships characterized by empathetic listening, engagement, and aligned action.” Read More

10. Building Team Trust in a Virtual World

Trust is a key ingredient in the success of any team. Building and maintaining trust in a virtual team presents unique challenges and opportunities for deeper connection and growth. Find out strategies for developing psychological safety and building a culture of trust within your team.

“Our annual team offsite is an experience we all look forward to, moments in nature to disconnect, activities that connect us to our colleagues and an opportunity to deepen relationships. This year, our plans had to shift with the stay-at-home orders in California. SIYLI’s Teacher Development Manager Abri Holden mentioned “we knew this was a vital moment to maintain our group connection, so instead of canceling, we decided to redesign it as a virtual experience that still allowed for vulnerability and deep connection.”Read More

Stay tuned for the exciting news and resources we will share in 2021 and beyond by signing up for our monthly newsletter.