Behavior 5: Think About Your Thinking


To think about your thinking, you need to look deep within yourself and discover who you are and why you think the way you do. You must be self-aware of your inner dialogue and make the commitment to work at this behavior to become a more effective and influential servant leader.

Thinking about your thinking deals with your attitude and the thoughts you have about yourself and those around you. If you examine the thoughts that come up for you daily, are they positive, negative, curious, accusatory, open-minded, loving, stressful? It’s very possible to have a variety of thoughts, seeing as we each have between 60,000-80,000 per day.

Having internal awareness of what’s going on inside your mind is key to becoming an avid servant leader who provides value to those around you. If you’re realizing in business meetings your thoughts are negative, opposed to change or stubborn when it comes to important decisions, examine them. Why are you opposing change? Is something from your past resurfacing? Are you willing to see things another way? When you ask yourself questions and examine what’s coming up for you on the inside, you’ll be a more effective leader on the outside.

Some steps to help you think about your thinking are as follows:

  •  Find time in your daily or weekly routine to self-reflect.
  •  Log what is coming up in your mind. Evaluate these thoughts.
  • Hold yourself accountable for your actions. Think first, then act.
  • Keep daily commitments or repeat affirmations, e.g., I am open to others’ thoughts and opinions.
  • Keep at it! Self-awareness takes time and practice. 

“Thinking about our thinking is about noticing our triggers, understanding our responses, memorizing when and where we are most likely to get hijacked (and by whom!), and expanding our capacity to keep the car on the road when the black ice appears.” – David Berry


Erin Joyce
Social Media Consultant for Servant Leadership Institute