A leader is a leader, in all areas of life… at all times. Leaders take the opportunity to create change and make the world a better place. However, it doesn’t mean free from mistakes, but it does mean a willingness to accept responsibility and to take opportunities for growth.
Leadership Isn’t Always Easy
This isn’t always easy, sometimes we get hurt.
People think leadership is strong and tough and being in control. Not always. Sometimes, it is gentle and kind and it hurts. And then it is gentle and kind again, and it hurts again. Ask any parent and they will tell you how much showing leadership to a child can hurt.
Lead According to Your Values
Leaders lead according to a set of values, principals and core beliefs that we set when we decide that we are going to be leaders in this world. If you don’t yet have these defined, I strongly encourage taking time to define them.
Leaders make decisions based on these values, principals and core beliefs and not whether other people “deserve it”. Because, we are accountable for our decisions. However, we also have to make decisions that are best for the organizations, people and homes that have been entrusted to our care.
This can cause such internal confusion at times.
My Real Life Lessons Learned
Recently, I’ve been working with someone on a personal project. Its been challenging, with timelines, scope, and cost constantly changing without conversations or consent. My questions are often met with defensiveness and sometimes even anger.
I made many decisions based on my values, principals and core beliefs. However, I didn’t always make decisions that were best for my family and our household. I tried too much to minimize the drama. For the sake of the project and others involved, I tried to avoid the conflict.
I see more clearly the decisions that I made that were based on my values, principals and core beliefs and those in which I used my values, principals and core beliefs as an excuse to justify avoiding conflict. Conflict isn’t always bad. I allowed her to be disrespectful to me, our family and our home by not having needed conversations and by not setting and maintaining appropriate boundaries for both of us.
This relationship should have been a positive energy exchange and as a leader, I was responsible to make sure it was. Although I feel betrayed and sad, I’ll do better as I wrap up this project and next time to see where I can set better boundaries and have the needed difficult conversations.
In the end though we don’t change the world without being in the world. And often, the world tries to change us. But having a clear understanding of our values, principals and core beliefs allows us to see when to pull back a bit, especially while hurt – reflect and then get back out there. Leadership is a beautiful opportunity to bring about change in this world.
Don’t harden though, don’t dictate and don’t let the world change you. Lead Always.