Of all the leadership traits that have been identified, assessed, developed, and written about, I’d like to focus on one that is at the top of my list – Leaders Must Serve Others. Think of Gandhi and MLK.
This “attitude for service” is most often learned and demonstrated before we get our first ‘management’ job. It starts with how we lead ourselves as individual contributors and team members.
It’s amazing how influential our leadership style can be to others – our coworkers, suppliers, clients, community, family, etc. People see the inherent goodness in it and realize that it really is worthy of emulating. When you are on the receiving end of someone else’s act of service, it awakens your spirit and warms your heart. We then have this urge to pay-it-forward because the rewarding feelings from being on the giving-end are equally wonderful…we can see it in the face of the person who just gave to us. And who doesn’t want to have that?
Plato said: “He who is not a good servant will not be a good master.”
This lesson is stressed in my coaching program. Effective leaders are born from having been good followers. They are observant, they learn from their leaders, and they take the best of themselves and what they have learned from others and incorporate that into their style of leadership.
In a leadership book called Synchronicity by Joseph Jaworski, which was gifted to me by a friend and former coworker, Ernesto Aguero, the author agrees that leadership is about serving others and that leadership is about a state of being, not doing. Jaworski goes further by defining leadership as about learning how to shape the future, a choice to allow life to unfold through us, and the importance of seeing the world as made up of relationships. When we are wholly accepting of each other, we see everyone’s value and potential, we focus on their positives not their negatives, you provide an opening through which others can bring forward their very best self without reservation. We all should focus on this because often this part of leadership is the most rewarding.
If this is an area that you want to better develop, let’s talk.
Feeling good about you today? Are you your biggest fan or biggest heckler?
You were born incredible talent and capability and you’ve spent your life building on that…improving, adding on, becoming better. You’ve overcome so many obstacles, demonstrated perseverance, intelligence, will power, imagination, passion and so much more.
So what reason do you have to doubt yourself?
Do not fall into the trap of comparing yourself to anyone else…it’s a losing proposition, especially if you are harshly self-critical. There’s only one YOU – just make the most of YOU and everything will take care of itself. Let them be them, and let you be YOU!
You are uniquely gifted and capable – you just need to Believe in yourself. This I can show you how to do, so give me a call.
Do not overestimate the competition and underestimate yourself. You are better than you think.”
~ Timothy Ferriss ~
Will you at your best today? Yes, if you have Confidence-Faith in yourself, and if you are comfortable in our own skin, and if you lead with your passion and love. Your talents, your feelings, and your style are unique to you. Abstain from playing the ‘comparison game’ with someone you admire, there’s no point to it. If you need competition, then compete with yourself…compete against your thoughts and feelings that want to hold you back from taking productive actions that move you towards positive outcomes…and challenge yourself to bring out your best. I guarantee that your best is plenty good, even great, and it’s uniquely you.
Enjoy the inspiring quotes below.
“Confidence is a choice, not a symptom. You succeed because you’ve chosen to be confident.“
~ Seth Godin ~
“When I experience and accept myself exactly as I am, then I change.“
~ Cherie McCoy ~
I recommend you read this blog post by Darren Hardy who says that to win in the game of life you will need to “be the ball” and learn The Bounce. What is The Bounce? To fall rapidly, hit bottom suddenly with impact and rebound decisively. He makes an important distinction between falling and failing, the difference being how you respond to disappointments. Read about the four distinct phases of The Bounce – The Fall, The Impact, The Restoration, and The Elevation. http://darrenhardy.success.com/2011/08/mastering-the-bounce/
Since childhood I have had the bad habit of comparing myself to others, and what a dis-service it’s been to me. Why? Because in doing so, I focus on what I perceive to be areas that I am lacking in. I’ve been overly self-critical, putting more energy on the 5%-10% that did not go exactly as planned at the expense of focusing on the 90%-95% that did go as planned.
I’ve become aware of this bad habit and I’ve learned that this habit of thinking fails to support the results nor the feelings that I want to enjoy. So, I now choose to focus on the good…and to stop comparing myself to others, instead focusing on being the best “me” that I can be. My/our goal is not to be the best replica of someone else whom we admire. We are all uniquely talented and we should embrace this, nurture this, and be comfortable being our most authentic self. Agreed?
That said, enjoy the 2 quotes below.
“When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you. ”
~ Lau-Tzu ~
“When I experience and accept myself exactly as I am, then I change.”
~ Cherie McCoy ~
I’ve heard this said many times before with respect to a variety of social issues. I’m saying it with respect to ourselves. This is the pathway to fulfillment, authenticity, and success. We especially need to become more self-aware, more conscious of our thoughts and feeling during difficult challenges in our lives – personally and professionally. All of our difficulties can be solved, solutions found, if we quiet the fears, doubts, and worries that beg for our attention and energy. Now is the time to start changing how we think, what we allow ourselves to think about and to feel. It’s a process and a journey worth every ounce of effort with put in. Before long, we are doing things we would have never allowed ourselves to do, and accomplishing things that some time ago seemed impossible.
Please read the 3 quotes below slowly, thoughtfully, and take in the message each one has to teach us.
“We’re at the point in our evolution that we all have to become conscious. This is a time of revolution. There’s no holding back.”
~ Genpo Roshi ~
“Every great and deep difficulty bears in itself its own solution. It forces us to change our thinking in order to find it.”
~ Niels Bohr ~
“Start by doing what is necessary, then what is possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.”
~ St. Francis of Assisi ~
What are your thoughts?
From the Dark to Light
When I speak to my friends and family, I am now quick to admit that for my entire career I had no real career goal or destination. Instead, I wandered without purpose, making job changes once I became burned out, bored, or both. My only goal (criteria) for the next job was that it challenged me to learn something new and grow. I figured that one of these years I would discover my real purpose, my true love, maybe even build my own business. Well, 29 years passed and I still had not figured out anything...so I started to become worried, frustrated, and increasingly depressed. I was paralyzed by fear, worry and doubt, stuck in habitual patterns that were familiar but were failing to make me feel satisfied, fulfilled. I appreciated my paycheck, corporate benefits, and making a contribution to my employers, but that was not enough.
You see, a person without direction and purpose is like a ship without a rudder.
Here's what Earl Nightingale had to say about this: "It's estimated that about 95% (of people) can be compared to ships without rudders. Subject to every shift of wind and tide, they're helplessly adrift. And while they fondly hope that they'll one day drift into a rich and successful port, you and I know that for every narrow harbor entrance, there are a 1,000 miles of rocky coastline. The chances against their drifting into port are 1,000 to one. But the 3% who have taken the time and exercised the discipline to decide on a destination and to chart a course sail straight and far across the deep oceans of life, reaching one port after another and accomplishing more in just a few years than the rest accomplish in a lifetime."
Something had to change! So I committed to figuring out what I really wanted to do with my life, professionally and personally. Harder yet, I wanted to understand what was holding me back. So I began reading books, attending seminars and experiential programs and, for once, really THINKING.
When I changed, everything began to change. When I quit my job and did not panic, I knew something special was going to happen for me. I had made the kind of leap that people talk about…a leap of FAITH.
That leap, preceded by the work I did on myself, was rewarded – I found Mr. Bob Proctor, who offered me an opportunity to become a certified facilitator of his Thinking Into Results program. Now, I’m supporting people who feel like I felt, and like me, really want something more fulfilling from life. I could not be more exciting about that!
Do you want to discover your purpose?
Do you want to learn the skills that will take you to the next level?
What you and I are capable of is only limited by our thinking and our self-image. I can help you see and realize your full potential and show you how to create the mindset to reach it.
Managing Your Mind To Get Better Results
I am happy to report that the “Managing Your Mind To Get Better Results, Professionally and Personally” on March 26 at the National Association of Social Workers’ East Bay Region annual luncheon went very well. The event sponsors’ followed via email with me to say:
“Your presentation was very insightful and I truly enjoyed it.”
“As a Social Worker, I am always inspiring others to reach their goals. Tom's program did that for me. It inspired me to stay on course with my own goals both professionally and personally. Great job, Tom.”
“Your presentation was fantastic.”
Many of the 26 attendees thanked me and said they found the information very interesting. Here is a photo of me with the event sponsors, and a photo of me responding to an attendee’s question.