Before we can make a valuable contribution by leading and helping others, we must first successfully lead ourselves! Leading Oneself is the essential first step.
Leadership is critical. We typically don’t manage ourselves out of a slump or being stuck…we lead ourselves to transform out of decline into a new, highly desirable future condition.
Growing, transforming, and innovating our lives in a climate of stagnation is hard enough. But innovating in an environment of decline—where things are actively pulling you down requires more than just determination.
One soon realizes that they are swimming alone against a strong current of what most believe is impossible and not worth the effort. Your desire to grow and innovate requires more than standard energy and enthusiasm.
To maximize the forces within, you have to integrate growth into your whole being. If the four dimensions of Human Nature—physical, mental, social, and spiritual, are to be expressed well, they must all be developed.
I can share with you what worked for me, but bear in mind no one can tell you just how to live, grow, and improve. Part of the journey and the joy is discovering and learning from your own experiences. Experience is still the best teacher.
Leading Oneself: Embrace experience as an experiment.
The body reacts to the mind, and the mind reacts to daily stresses—demands, tension, guilt, and anger. The Danish Philosopher Kierkegaard advises, “don’t lose your desire to walk. Every day I walk myself into a state of well being and walk away from every illness. I have walked myself into my best thoughts, and I know of no thought so burdensome that I cannot walk away from it.”
Exercise develops your cardiovascular system, and at the same time, your discipline. As you increase strength, you build resiliency and perseverance.
Combined this with mental stimulation such as reading, studying, increased focus, and challenging yourself through action, the entire process feeds the whole.
Incorporate a contemplative practice as a workout for your Emotional Intelligence, the inner spiritual self.
- The dimensions of Human Nature—physical, mental, spiritual, and social must be developed and integrated.
- The body is an equal learning machine to the mind and the soul.
- The best self-education is not gained. It is absorbed.
Through whole-person development, you lead yourself toward increased value and, ultimately, increased contribution. We started here and simply walked it back.
The process of becoming a leader is synonymous with becoming your best self.
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