Spiders have some important things to teach us about leadership:
- Don’t be attached to your creations; make room for further evolution
It is easy to become enamored with my own work or opinion, especially if it is the result of inspiration. After all, if my work is inspired, isn’t in a way, sacred?
Spider teaches me that destruction and renewal are essential for continued evolution. Some spiders, such as orb-weavers, construct a new web each day, systematically destroying and eating the old one, integrating it into the next cycle of spinning.
Because I am human, my own web-weavings are inevitably distortions of the inspiration I receive. To become enamored of them is to attach to the distortion. To love without attachment is to honor the creative force, rather than the thing created. To let go of my creations is to acknowledge the abundance from which they sprang and from which sufficiently more will arise to take their place. As my leadership become more authentic, my ideas and creations become purer and more clearly a reflection of the greater Truth within. I must be willing to create, destroy and re-create if I am to evolve.
- Your environment is reflected in your work
Spider shows me that my external and internal environments are reflected in my work. Substances, such as psychotropic drugs and even caffeine, cause orb-weaver spiders to create distorted and dysfunctional webs. Several species of poisonous spiders, such as the brown recluse and black widow, weave “disorganized webs”, as if the poison that is their survival mechanism is reflected in their self-created environment. My unhealthy habits, lack of work/life balance and unresolved conflicts distort my intentions to be a creative, productive and effective leader.
A spider’s web is not only sticky, but also electrically charged, effectively making it a filter for whatever is in its environment. From this, I learn I must be aware of the environment in which I choose to work. What am I attracting to my web? What am I bringing to myself? And, as a leader, I must also answer the critical question of what environment am I creating for my fellow spiders?
- What you create is not really yours
Although each spider creates its own web, it is really just manifesting the process evolution has developed. The blueprint is instinctual and not something the spider creates herself. Similarly, my own best work comes from somewhere outside of my usual conscious mind. If I am honest, “I” can’t really take credit, as I am merely the conduit.
As I evolve in my leadership and my humanity, my heart’s desire is to be a living expression of the creative force with which I become ever more connected. When I work from a place of balance, authenticity and connection, my leadership is truly inspired. The greater the inspiration, the humbler I feel about having “produced” it.