In the first part of this short series on embodied leadership, I would like to explain my understanding of embodied leadership and how you as a leader can benefit from it.



Since this is a text about embodied leadership, it is of course tempting to THINK about it. But first I would like to invite you to do a short self-experiment:

Imagine a (leadership) situation in which you are in a perfect flow. You feel curiosity and excitement and at the same time you can master all the requirements of the situation perfectly. This is exactly the situation you want to be in, a situation in which you can achieve your goals, live up to your values and have a positive impact on people and the success of your company.

Take a moment and follow your senses:

– Feel your heart pounding.

– Feel the curiosity and excitement in your body and on your skin.

– Feel the warmth and satisfaction of the moment.

– Feel how you are fully present in the here and now.

– Feel your joy and strength.

You have just experienced embodied leadership.



To put it in simple terms: Embodied leadership means that we fully utilise our human potential and do not limit ourselves. In contrast to many traditional leadership styles, which focus on rational solutions and objective arguments, embodied leadership takes the whole person into account:

– Our mind: Goals, values, beliefs

– Our body: Senses, feelings, posture

– Our behaviour: Gestures, words, actions

Embodying leadership means being connected with yourself, with others and with the situation. We feel completely present in the here and now. Let’s compare two different ways of dealing with a challenging leadership situation using an example:


Example 1:

Mark is facing a difficult conversation with one of his employees who is not meeting his expectations. He believes that a good manager should be tough in such situations, so he prepares arguments to make the differences in performance clear. Although Mark actually likes the employee, he doesn’t want to show sympathy so as not to be seen as weak. The conversation itself is then very matter-of-fact and his employee accepts his point of view and takes the blame. Even though the conversation went well on the surface, Mark has a bad feeling.


Example 2:

Sandra is also facing a difficult conversation with one of her employees who does not meet her expectations. She likes the person and is aware that she is afraid to talk to them. Sandra feels tense and her breathing is shallow and rapid. This realisation helps her to relax and connect with her intuition. She realises that she wants to be aware of the differences in performance AND be compassionate towards the other person. During the conversation, Sandra is able to take a deep breath and be energised and calm at the same time. She encourages her employee to open up and talk about the difficulties. Together they define clear action steps to improve the situation.


Embodied leadership leads to more satisfaction, better relationships and better results, especially in challenging situations. In the next article, I will talk about the roots of embodied leadership and how you can develop into an embodied leader.


If you already want to know more about my understanding of embodied leadership, you can also read my latest blog posts here:

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:


If you want to learn more about embodied practices that help you live your full potential, you can watch my video series “Bodyhacks” here:


Bodyhack #1:

Bodyhack #2:

Bodyhack #3:

Bodyhack #4:

Bodyhack #5:

Bodyhack #6: