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Leaders are found everywhere

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Leaders are found in the most unusual places and there are many examples to follow.

In life, when you really think about it, we are writing our own plays. We are the writers, the leaders of our lives.

If you step back for a moment and think about your life, what would your play be like? Would it be a best seller? Would it end happily? Would you change the world? As you’re writing the play, you have a choice to hire the actors and actresses. It’s your play. So, if there is someone you don’t want to play a part, don’t give them a part.

In your play you get to choose and discern what type of person you want to be. Don’t worry, if you have taken the wrong turn in this road of life, you always can get back on track. After all, it is your play. Bumps in the road are almost guaranteed, but every bump is sometimes a not-to-subtle lesson. I gave the following suggestions to a group of young future leaders recently:

  • Be true to yourself and keep an open heart with an open mind.
  • Develop or continue impeccable integrity. When you make a commitment, align your thoughts with that commitment. Many times in business and in our personal lives, we make commitments frivolously and then don’t want to honor those decisions. Give commitments serious thought.
  • Another suggestion is to develop curiosity. Discover something new every day. If there is a day you have trouble discovering something new, learn a new word. Believe in lifelong education. Education from schools and universities is very important but there are many more ways to learn in life.
  • Follow your passion and have fun. If you follow your passion it won’t seem like work because you are enjoying what you do.
  • Be forgiving of yourself and others. Forgive yourself for the past. It’s over and done with, don’t go back there. Forgive others as you don’t know the burden they carry. When we talk about forgiveness people think it’s about large things. Many times it’s very small things that give us problems. A couple years ago I was giving a talk in California to the IAAP organization and an administrative assistant to a large Silicon Valley CEO came up afterward. She said she was horrified one day when she sent out an email from her boss with a typo in it. She worried about it for three weeks and developed an ulcer. After she was diagnosed with an ulcer, she realized holding on to such a trivial incident wasn’t worth her health.
  • Roar like a lion and develop courage. It takes courage to put yourself out there, whatever the situation. It takes courage to be an athlete and risk failure. It takes courage to be a leader at church, work or local charitable organizations. You risk humiliation, failure, ridicule and embarrassment. Do it anyway, for the rewards are much greater.
  • Always think win-win and what I call “what’s in it for me.” If you are asking someone to do something or leading a team of volunteers or employees, stop and think “what’s in it for me?” Most people ask themselves this question when asked to do a task. By coming up with the answer to the question you develop a win-win for both parties and accomplish an important task.
  • Make sure you stay relevant. The world is moving at such a fast pace staying fresh with current information will ensure your relevancy.
  • Finally, you are a leader. If you run a household, you are a leader. If you volunteer, you are a leader. Leaders are found everywhere.

Susan Rider is a life coach and member of Speakers with Spark who lives in LaRue County and can be reached with reader comments at susanrider@msn.com.