It’s no secret, and it’s been said numerous times that the people who lead can be polarizing. MLK, Steve Jobs, Nelson Mandela, Muhamed Ali and even John F. Kennedy.
Whether you agree with their points of view or not, they were leaders. They lead others because of something they believed in so deeply that they would die for it. And they did. It was not a popularity contest, but rather an exercise in ostracization.
I’m not sure how many of us have the conviction that these men did in a ’cause.’ I’d like to think I do or at least I could if I wanted, but I’m pretty sure I’m kidding myself.
But, this is what it takes to lead. I can only hope to be heading in the right direction. The direction of these men.
It would seem to me the older I get in age, there are aspects of my life that seem to be getting much more clear to me.
One of those things would be the people I surround myself with. I understand it can be a bit challenging when we’re younger and we’re trying to make our way through the world. We don’t always have a choice who our roommate will be or who is in our class or maybe even who our friend’s friend is and has unexpectantly showed up.
But we do have this choice: Do we want to be associated with a person that is toxic, disrespectfully, less than, negative, spiteful, jealous, insecure, non-supportive, self-serving and undermining us?
It’s up to you. I’ve found very little patience with these kinds of people in my life. Maybe it’s because I’m getting older and I realize my time is limited and I only want to spend it with people that come from a place of Love and inspire me to be the best version of myself I can be. Maybe it’s because life is hard enough without carrying other people’s baggage down this road as well. I have enough of my own I’m working on leaving behind. Or maybe it’s because I feel like I deserve better. Don’t we all?
Yes, we’re all injured human beings doing our best to make it through this thing called life. But, that’s no excuse to treat anyone as ‘less than.’ Friend or not.
And that’s why I have no problem moving on without this person in my life and I don’t give it a second thought.
That’s not selfish. It’s called taking care of the Self.
I’ve always struggled with self-perspective over the years; Where am I in my growth, development and journey towards giving the world the best version of myself I can be.
Maybe it’s because of my competitive nature and desire to always be better than I was the day before. Maybe it’s to gain the approval of my father. Or maybe it’s because my focus is on the wrong metric.
In any case there seems to be a fine balance of what the truth is at the moment and how to move forward with a sense of optimism.
One I will continue to refine and cultivate in order garner the best of myself today and going into tomorrow.
It’s pretty simple, but not many of us choose to look at our lives this way; If we never give up, then there’s no such thing as failure.
Why? Because we’ve only failed when we’ve chosen to give up and try no more.
So then, by theory let’s never stop trying.
Sounds good to me.
It can be easy to slip into a pattern where we feel 95% of our choices have already been made for us before our feet even hit the floor rolling out of bed in the morning.
But, that couldn’t be farther from the truth and I have to remind myself multiple times throughout a day of that being true.
Every new moment is an opportunity to choose; Choosing Love instead of fear and hate. Patience instead of frustration. Kindness over anger. Warmth towards others instead of remaining isolated. Hope for a better tomorrow instead of dread and despair.
We can choose to give to others and connect rather than feeling sorry for ourselves and remaining a victim. We can choose to take responsibility for our lives instead of blaming others. Or re-invent ourselves in order to bring more passion and love to the kind of work we’re spending 40+ hours a week doing.
We can choose to take pride in every task we engage in throughout the day and make it matter to us.
Nothing is written. And all things are possible.
The choice is ours to make.