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Are You Experiencing Leadership Mental Darkness?

 We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.” – Plato

One of the best gifts you can give yourself is to discover the light within you. When your find the light inside you, you get to the core of who you are and discover that your ultimate purpose is just to be who you are. Your light is your truth – that spark of joy, happiness, love, and unchanging state of internal peace. We each have our own light. So, no matter what challenges might arise, we must step into the light and move forward. You are the light you are so in desperate need of.

My initial purpose in life was to find my mental light. It was to find my truth. I then found it. That made me realize the real tragedy of life which is being afraid of mental light. Since discovering my own mental light, I vowed to dedicate my entire life helping people discover theirs. My purpose is to add some mental light, to help people, especially leaders move from mental darkness to mental light. This applies both to personal and leadership mental light. Having spent years in corporate, I realize how many leaders operate in mental darkness which lead organizations into the dark.

Yesterday, I hosted in my office a group of thirty young men and women between the ages of eighteen and twenty four, as part of my future leaders development program. Some of these young ones are in their matric year, others in universities and colleges, and a few have graduated and are doing their their internships. Two in this group of thirty, dropped out of university citing that they made a wrong career choice. Engaging with this group made it clear to me the influence we have on them as parents in terms of their choice of careers. One of them told me that he was upgrading his matric results because he wanted to pursue a career in law and on asking him if he really wanted to pursue the career, he said, “Honestly NO! My parents want me to.” It’s a fact that our mental darkness as parents gets passed on to our kids. When a parent/leader is experiencing mental darkness, call it mental load-shedding, those that are being led suffer a great deal. This is how mental load-shedding, mental darkness gets passed on from generation to generation.

Load-shedding is the deliberate shutdown of electricity power in a part or parts of a power-distribution system, generally to prevent the failure of the entire system when the demand strains the capacity of the system. So, when a person is experiencing a mental load-shedding, it means they are in mental darkness which leads to. This mental load-shedding leads to leadership load-shedding, hence we are as a country experiencing this darkness. It’s an indication of leadership mental darkness. Your action as a leader can either bring mental darkness or mental light to the organization and the person you lead. Every organization I’ve worked for and engaged with as a consultant, I came across a lot of unhappy people. This unhappiness in people is not because of their roles, but mainly because of leadership mental darkness. We’ve all experienced darkness, in one way or the other. When I personally look at the darkness I went through, I could have easily lost confidence where I grew up, in humanity and could have easily plunged into a total mental darkness, I could have lost everything.

Because of my experience and understanding of the mental darkness, I know that every person I confront is grappling with some mental darkness of some sort and mine is to add some mental light to every person I interact with. I bring some light because I am inspired by Africa’s true/original meaning which is light or sunny. My purpose is to help leaders move from Mental Darkness into Mental Light using Neuroscience & Engineering tools through the process called – The “Veli Ndaba NeuroEngineering Leadership Effect” – #VNNLE. So, #VNNLE is about bringing in Leadership Mental Light.

It’s not about the person at the traffic lights that needs to hear my message – I’m here for you as a leader. Whenever I engage with leaders, I see them smiling, and it looks like everything is ok, but what I’ve learned is that as human beings, we’ve mastered to suppress our mental darkness by smiling. I understand what you are going through as a leader. I am here to share with you my personal story and the tools to help drive away mental darkness and bring in mental light, the leadership light. As a leader in your organization, your responsibility is to make better decisions, be reflective, stay cool under pressure and more importantly be better at influencing and collaborating with others. To achieve this, you must learn something about your brain, and this will have a profound effect on your ability to understand yourself and others in order to maximize your team’s collective genius. Learning about the #VNNLE – the effect of the brain and engineering in maximizing results is everything.


A leader is meant to shine their bright light for those they lead in order for them to follow and clearly see the vision, but if the leader is in a state of mental darkness, mental load-shedding, this is not possible. Many leaders are so scared of mental light because they’ve been in a state of mental darkness for a very long time. Well, it’s never too late for you, I am here to help you drive away this mental darkness and bring in mental light, your leadership mental light.

Yes, we can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark, but the real tragedy of life is when a leader is afraid of the mental light. I am here for you, contact me and let’s start the journey with your organization’s leadership team.

Veli Ndaba is a NeuroEngineering Leadership Effect Speaker and Trainer, Mind Coach and Author of four books (You Are Born to Win, Your Dream is Calling You and SWITCH ON! And Set Your Soul On Fire!), Newspaper Columnist and Entrepreneur. To book him to speak at your next event or to help you and your team unleash your greatness, contact him on, or +27 83 304 9773

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