May 18, 2022

For a Leader by John O’Donohue

I came across this Blessing for a New Leader from the book “Benedictus” by John O’Donohue. May we be inspired and look for these qualities in our future leaders.

May you have the grace and wisdom

To act kindly, learning

To distinguish between what is

Personal and what is not


May you be hospitable to criticism.

May you never put yourself at the centre of things.

May you act not from arrogance but out of service.

May you work on yourself,

Building and refining the ways of the mind.


May you learn to cultivate the art of presence

In order to engage with those who meet you.

When someone fails or disappoints you,

May the graciousness with which you engage

Be their stairway to renewal and refinement.


May you treasure the gifts of the mind

Through reading and creative thinking

So that you continue as a servant of the frontier

Where the new will draw its enrichment of the old,

And you never become a functionary.


May you know the wisdom of deep listening

The healing of wholesome words,

The encouragement of the appreciative gaze,

The decorum of held dignity,

The springtime edge of the bleak question.


May you have a mind that loves frontiers

So that you can evoke the bright fields

That lie beyond the view of the regular eye.


May you have good friends

To mirror your blind spots.

May leadership be for you

A true adventure of growth.