Shane Krider from Polaris Global Marketing wrote: "In general, people way underestimate that they could change if they just believed they could. There seems to be a learned fear of taking control. There seems to be a general agreement that there is safety in numbers. People seem to be looking for anyone who is willing to stand up and lead the way. People seem to be quite satisfied to follow someone they really don't agree with just to avoid leading themselves."
To me this is an alarming truth. Leadership, in my estimation, is in part the goal in life. Leadership encompasses all the principles that we learn from personal development. Ralph Waldo Emerson, Napoleon Hill and Jesus the Christ all taught principles that organically lead to leadership. It's not a title to behold, it's an action to be shared with the desire others will emulate. I'm not sure people are satisfied to follow others to avoid leading themselves. I'm not sure they even know there is another path. Most people have learned from others to be happily hopeless. I see the many faces of these hopeless people on a day to day basis. They are stuck in a rut. A rut started by there parents or grandparents. They are following the same instruction book as the previous generations in their lives. These people aren't bad people. They are stuck people. Limited by the emotional and spiritual boundary lines in their hearts and minds. They've lost desire for a better life. They live with poverty mentality in the sense of wholeness in all areas of their life.
How do I know this? In casual conversations I may ask them about the work they do. Then I may ask if this is what they want to do the rest of their lives. Not one has answered yes. Zero, zilch, nada. I may follow up with; What do you want to do? Most don't have any idea. Some may have an idea but it's vague. One 30 plus young man couldn't think of anything in particular he wanted to do in life. He simply wanted to find a good job so he could take care of his family. He is a good man without a plan for his future.
I didn't receive much encouragement to become a leader or strive for leadership in any area of life. I don't recall any teachers or coaches teaching leadership. It wasn't a desire in my life. I was only looking to find work that I could do to make $50,000 a year. I was the same as the young man I described above. I was a good man with out a plan.
I'm sure as I can be that leadership should be a goal in everyone's life. Not for the sake of holding a title but for all it will require of you to become. It may be in a volunteer position or working in a major corporation. It could be at home or at church. It could be in Toastmasters International or in Girl Scouts but what ever the capacity it will require of you to change your thinking process and the way you work with others. You will be tested, tried and denied. Your reactions will need to be checked before you respond to any given situation. Your perspective will need to change in certain areas. And you will learn to be decisive in difficult times. At times it will require every ounce of energy you have. But in the end you will look in the mirror and say, "Look who I have become."
Setting the goal of being a leader will help you to "find the call" for your life and pursue it. It will help you to set a clear path to accomplishing a goal. It will help you mature emotionally and be responsible for all you do. Leadership will help build self-esteem and build a good reputation. I've had to make some adjustments in my thinking lately concerning the call on my life and my goals pertaining to it. Mainly, I've had to add to my goal that I will strive to be a leader in my chosen industry. Not just a follower but a leader. For me there is no virtue in being a follower for the rest of my days. First I will lead me, then my family and ultimately my industry.
How about you? Will you lead yourself into the life Jesus called us to live? Will you take the bull (your life) by the horns and direct it or will you live the life of a long forgotten follower and live happily hopeless?
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