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The Stress Factor: How Some Leaders Turn Stress into Thriving

Wisdom Works strengthens leaders, brands, and work cultures through the cultivation of wellbeing. In fact, using our holistic wellbeing leadership assessment system Be Well Lead Well Pulse® with 425+ leaders across multiple continents, we recently found that leaders reporting High wellbeing are 38% more likely to report engaging in paradoxical leadership behavior than leaders who score Low in wellbeing.

This means thriving leaders are apt to abandon right/wrong or either/or thinking in favor of both/and approaches that utilize conflicting perspectives as an impetus for greater innovation, inclusiveness, learning, and growth. As outlined in our Be Well Lead Well® Research Insights report, Effectively Leading Through Paradox: A Pivotal Role for Wellbeing, wellbeing is a vital resource for every leader navigating complex and changing environments, at work and at home, where solutions are never clear or simple, but full of contradictory demands.

Stress Plays a Fascinating Role

We also found an intriguing role for stress with these leaders. For those leaders who scored Low in paradoxical leadership, wellbeing decreased as stress increased. On the other hand, those leaders scoring High in paradoxical leadership did not experience this adverse relationship. They reported greater overall wellbeing with increasing levels of stress. By adopting a both/and mindset, these leaders appeared to turn their stress into thriving, the very personal transformation organizations require for leadership effectiveness today.



About Wisdom Works

Since its founding as a social enterprise in 1999, Wisdom Works has advanced thriving as a standard of success for forward-thinking leaders and organizations. We believe thriving is the internal resource that enables people to meet their demands and evolve with a sense of mastery, high quality of life, and growth—and is essential for healthier, more conscious, and sustainable leadership in our rapidly changing and complex world.

Engage in this journey with us!

  1. See the Be Well Lead Well® Research Insights report, Effectively Leading Through Paradox: A Pivotal Role for Wellbeing, to dive into the original research. Consider: How could you use science-backed pathways of wellbeing, such as outlined by Wisdom Works’ Be Well Lead Well Pulse® assessment, to enhance the abilities of your leaders to lead effectively in the midst of paradoxes?
  2. Contact us at info@wisdom-works.com to access the Be Well Lead Well®) platform of assessments, bespoke programs, and services that help leaders in your organization develop new ways to make thriving a priority for their teams and work cultures, starting with themselves. Or ask us about the Be Well Lead Well Pulse® Certified Guides in your region who can assist you.
  3. Participate in our transformational certification program to get certified in Be Well Lead Well Pulse® and become part of a growing global network of leaders and practitioners who are amplifying leadership effectiveness through wellbeing.