I’ve been blessed to have some tremendous mentors throughout my life and my career. They helped me develop my outlook, my confidence and my approach to leadership development. Today, I am still blessed to have many great mentors, including my husband, my siblings, John C. Maxwell, and many others in my community who have invested their time and wisdom to help me grow.
My mentors have given me so much over my life and my career, but I want to share four key leadership truths that have paid huge dividends for me, because I believe they will prove to be a benefit for you as well.
Don’t judge reality based on your perception
Our perception of what’s happening to and around us is limited, but you don’t have to allow these limits to influence your life and decision-making. My business mentor helped me stop assuming and start looking at the meaning I’m assigning to what I believe. This process helped me let go of limiting beliefs I “know to be true” and begin to explore what is actually true.
When I’m in a place where I feel stuck, I can step back, pull my focus from what’s got me stuck and reconnect with the vision that sent me in that direction in the first place. When you don’t limit your thinking you realize there are unlimited possibilities, and you can give yourself permission to think bigger.
Live in the moment
How many people get sidetracked and off course because they allow fear of the unknown to keep them from making a decision?
We’ve all seen that squirrel in the center of the road. He started off on one side where he was safe. But what he wanted was on the opposite side, so he had to cross. He makes the decision to run, and he makes it halfway. There he is on the yellow line, safe. But what happens next? That squirrel is so petrified by the unknown, he will spin back around and try to make it where he started in the first place. He’s halfway “home” but never gets there.
How many leaders get tripped up in their journey because they’re afraid to confront what might happen next? Living in the moment, being fully present, will allow you to look at what really Is, rather than what your past or your fears are telling you it Might Be.
Celebrate wins every day
Every day of progress is a win. Every day where you made a good decision or avoided a poor choice can be a reason to celebrate. Celebrate your opportunities, count your blessings. Are you building toward something? Don’t get so focused on the long-term end goal that you miss out on an chance to appreciate how far you’ve come today. Learn to face your struggles and commemorate your victories one day at a time.
Practice empathy so you can learn to really listen
Some people are more naturally empathetic than others, but we all need to learn to practice empathy. This often requires a shift in thinking, beginning to see people as people first rather than roles doing a job — as human beings rather than human resources. Once you truly understand what you have, all of you can work together to build something that is undeniably greater than the sum of its parts.
Understanding and applying these four key leadership truths can have a tremendous influence on your ability to lead and your success in business and in life.
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