Personal Leadership Success Always Begins With Vision
Do you see yourself as a leader? If you are under the impression that leadership requires a title or "status" position and you do not possess either, then your answer to this question is probably, no. If, on the other hand, you perceive leadership as influence and you are aware of your influence on others and how to leverage it to achieve specific objectives in your life, then your answer to this question is probably, yes!
"Personal leadership is the ability and desire to crystallize your thinking and to establish a specific direction and destination for your own life. It includes the courage, choice and commitment to move in that direction by taking committed and determined action to acquire, accomplish, or become whatever you visualize for your future", according to Self.growth.com.
Crystallizing your thinking to determine the path you want your life to take requires that you are able to visualize future outcomes from the actions that you are taking today. This requires that you have a vision for your life.
Without a compelling vision of the future that you want to create and experience, you could easily find yourself working hard, day after day, and failing to achieve experiences that will give you a greater sense of meaning and fulfillment in your life. Surely, you deserve better.
Some of the benefits of having a compelling vision for your life includes:
- Your willingness to do more than expected in your current position
- Increases your value to an organization as you contribute your ideas, knowledge and skills toward it's success
- Helps you to identify goals most important to moving forward
- Empowers you to break goals down in manageable steps, recognizing and accepting that "all" progress is a process
- You will be more willing to take calculated risks associated with your goals
- You will recognize the importance of expanding your influence which means moving beyond your comfort zone to face your fear and self-doubt head on with deliberate and effective practices
Having navigated an award-winning leadership career with Marriott starting out as a housekeeper to become a general manager of a million-dollar plus property, I know first hand the power that comes with developing and enlarging the vision you have of yourself and the one you have of your future.
The leadership success I experienced would not been possible had I not had a picture in my mind of what I wanted to experience in my life.
- Feel that you have no purpose in life
- Spend time on tasks and activities that keep you stuck in the same state, year after year
- Be negatively influenced by people who have given up on their dreams and who tell you, "there's no point in dreaming"
- Become judgmental and critical of people who are pursuing their dreams
- Walk around in life with a chip on your shoulder
- Blame other people for the state of your life
- Feel powerless and uncertain of what to do next to make positive changes in your life
In my early 20s, I felt overwhelmed a lot because of thoughts and feelings like those above. Since, I wasn't able to pursue my dreams in the manner I thought was "the" only way to make them happen, I began to think and feel that there was no reason for me to dream. Fortunately, my life and the story that I was telling myself was transformed by expanding my faith in God, taking actions that built up my confidence and re-connecting to the strong which exists in the core of the human spirit.
Before I was able to manifest positive change in my life, I had to take full responsibility for my life. So, I began to exhibit personal leadership in and over my life. At the time, I had no status position or title. I simply recognized that if my life was going to change, "it was up to me".
Oprah says, "Nothing happens until you make a decision." And, Tony Robbins adds, "A real decision is measured by the fact you've taken a new action."
Today, you can decide to enlarge your personal leadership, by looking at an area in your life in which you aren't completely satisfied and asking yourself, First, "How have I abdicated my personal leadership in this area of my life resulting in the present situation?" and second, "How can I increase my personal leadership in this area of my life to make improvements in the situation?"
Your answers to the second question will engage your imagination. The thoughts that you begin to have about what's possible in the situation provides you with a image of a future state, in other words, the vision for what it is you want to experience.
If it doesn't happen naturally, it is important for you to cultivate an emotional reason for "why" it's important
for you to create this personal change to sustain the perseverance necessary to make it happen.
Our thoughts and emotions are linked. You can think, all day, every day, about the change that you want but without the emotional connection of why it's important, you will be spending your wheels getting nowhere. The emotional connection you have towards any goal serves as fuel for your inner-drive.
Your vision will provide you with clues as to what you need to do next. Create a daily and/or weekly plan of actions.
Focus on what you can do for now and begin to do it. Don't put it off until tomorrow. Don't accept any excuses from yourself. Manage any distractions that are monopolizing your time and energy and preventing you from doing what matters most to experience what it is you want. Taking these steps says to the world, "I'm in the driver seat of my life!" Instead of waiting for good to happen in your life, you have decided to make good happen in your life. This is the core of personal leadership success. Congratulations!
Share a challenge or success you have had in displaying personal leadership in the comments below.
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Until next time...
B Fearless...See Where It Gets You!