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  • Amina Aitsi-Selmi

A time to lead: 3 ways to be an unstoppable leader

As the pandemic kicked off, I remember resolving to lie low and ride it out quietly.

But the strangest thing happened. As I gave myself permission to lie low for a few days, a surge of energy hit me. I felt 100% clear that this was a time to show up and be the best leader I could be in service to whoever I could help.

It’s not an accident. It’s social contagion and the impact of being surrounded by great role models and leaders including my own coach.

You see good leaders create more leaders (not more followers).

Did you know that the word “leader” comes from the Old English lædan meaning “to go before as a guide”?

This is a great time if you know in your bones that things could be better in your work or life and that problems are opportunities in disguise.

Toxic environments are being challenged and purged to some extent. Time will tell how the chips land in the long term. I also believe that the best way to predict the future is to create it.

A time to lead

Whether it’s a career change, creating a business or growing your impact in the world, doubt is the enemy and the qualities of leadership are the same:

  1. You have a powerful mission that makes you unstoppable.

  1. You get out of your own way (yes, those gremlins in your head need to go…)

  1. You work sustainably so that you don’t burnout or alienate your team by going too fast.

When you have these, you eat doubt for breakfast.

Legend in the making: Earlier this month, my client Jasmine was hesitant about taking on a big project that could make a difference to the mental health of millions of people. She was afraid of failing as a leader. I suggested: “it doesn’t matter whether you succeed at this mission. But is this mission important enough that you’re willing to fail for it”. In that moment, it became obvious that she would take her team on this journey. You see, her zone of genius includes community building and seeing solutions when others can’t. She had everything she needed. But we’re usually blind to our zone of genius, especially under pressure.

If something inspires you and you want to step into the next level of your career or impact, you have the seed of possibility.

But if you’re concerned about failure, rejection or exposure, the simple truth is that you may not be clear enough about what you want or why you want it.

While becoming a leader can feel uncomfortable, I know one thing for sure: the best things in my career and life have happened when I’m willing to fail.

So you can let go of stressing about how to succeed and focus on this question: what are you willing to fail for?

If you have an answer, write to me.

Have a great week,


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