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February 2010

Self Leadership: Lead yourself to success

Great leadership starts with self leadership. If we can't conduct our own lives effectively, we can't effectively lead others. Think about this. How inspired are you to follow someone who:

  • Never completes a project or achieves a goal
  • Always has an excuse for everything
  • Lives in continual disarray, or
  • Displays poor interpersonal skills?

Most likely, you've cringed at some or all of the above statements. What person in your life comes to mind right now? How effective are you in the skills that would prevent such words from describing you?

Self leadership starts with knowing yourself intimately, commonly known in the coaching world as self awareness. Interestingly enough, self awareness is one of the most lacking skills in leaders today. Most of us tend to see the world through our own dirty glasses, not realizing how we really stack up to true greatness.

Once you know yourself - your strengths, weaknesses, behavior tendencies and motivators - you can begin to lead yourself to success. Following are some ways to become more self aware:

  • Take some behavioral/personality/skills assessments from a reputable provider/coach and develop some action steps based on what learn about yourself.
  • Ask for honest feedback from a trusted adviser, peers or subordinates on specific strategic areas you need to succeed. (Note: A 360 degree assessment can provide this for you and guarantee anonymity for your reviewers) 
  • Get serious about writing that personal mission or life purpose statement. 

Finally, live life with an open mind and remember that oftentimes other people know you better than you know yourself. Listen to what they are really saying about you and then lead yourself to become what you were created to be.

What will you do today to know yourself better? What tools have worked for you in the past?  As always, we'd love to hear from you in a comment!

If you would like to learn more about yourself through assessments and develop some skills from what you learn, that's what I help people do. Call me for a complimentary consultation today at 913-219-7844! 

Leading Forward: Don't Look Back

Leadership requires guts. Guts to make tough decisions. Guts to stand alone for what is right rather than what is popular. Guts to leave behind the old for the promise of the new. Leaders with guts make good decisions and press forward with their eyes fixed on the future.

Have you ever questioned a decision you've made to move forward? We all have. However, if we've used a good decision making process, our looking back causes more harm than good. Think about the following:

  • Football players who look back while rumbling for long touchdowns often get tackled just inches before the goal line...and lose the score. 
  • Sprinters who look back lose forward momentum...and the race.
  • Rock climbers who look back (down) lose their courage to make it to the top.

Looking back rarely gets us the win. What are you looking back for?

Following is a poem I'd like to share to encourage you to press forward into all that you are created to be, in leadership and in life. Enjoy, and as always, your comments are appreciated!

Don't Look Back
- by June Marie Johnson

As you travel through life there are always those times
when decisions just have to be made,
when the choices are hard and solutions seem scarce
and the rain seems to soak your parade!

There are some situations where all you can do
is to simply let go and move on,
gather courage together and choose a direction
that carries you toward a new dawn.

So pack up your troubles and take a step forward.
The process of change can be tough.
But think about all the excitement ahead,
if you can be stalwart enough!

There could be adventures you never imagined
just waiting around the next bend
and wishes and dreams just about to come true
in ways you can't yet comprehend!

Perhaps you'll find friendships that spring from new interests,
as you challenge your status quo
and learn there are so many options in life,
and so many ways you can grow!

Perhaps you'll go places you never expected
and see things that you've never seen,
or travel to fabulous, faraway worlds and
wonderful spots in between!

Perhaps you'll find warmth, affection and caring,
a "somebody special" who's there
to help you stay centered and listen with interest
to stories and feelings you share.

Perhaps you'll find comfort in knowing your friends
are supportive of all that you do
and believe that whatever decisions you make,
they'll be the right choices for you!

So keep putting one foot in front of the other
and taking your life day by day.
There's a brighter tomorrow that's just down the road.
Don't look back, you're not going that way!

If you need some assistance in pressing forward toward your goals, determining your goals or gaining confidence in your decision making, coaching may be for you. I help people move forward. Call me for a complimentary consultation today at 913-219-7844!