The Every Day Leader: BE BOLD… Walk through the OPEN Door

Months ago I wrote about the cardinal that was pecking at the window of our dining room begging to get in. I was reminded then how we as people can act similiarly…we do the same thing over and over thinking it will yield the result we want.  I also noted that if he would step back look at it from a different angle he might see the door was a better way to get in.

He has now taken up his pecking to the window above the door.  He pecks almost everyday.  It is as if he knows that the door is the way to get in, but he doesn’t quite have the nerve to actually go through with it.  He wants to take the next step, but just can’t quite seem to make himself do it.

Aren’t we just a little bit like that too?  We know what we want to do.  Maybe it is a dream to pursue, maybe it is making a career change, or any bold step of change in our life…but, like the cardinal, we just can’t quite get the nerve to do it.

Taking the first step…TODAY

The first step is always the hardest.

Instead of taking the first step, we keep playing it in our mind and we stay at the same place.  We wonder about the what ifs, we wonder if we have the courage to do it, we wonder what others would say, we wonder if we can do it, and we wonder if it will fail.

We have all heard the stories of those who have experienced failures – many failures before they found the success.  We all know of Thomas Edison, Colonel Sanders, Warren Buffet, and Trump and we know that failure could happen. 

One of the greatest lessons as leaders is to learn from your failures.  In fact, I would go as far to say that failing at times is really part of the success.  It is what we take away from that failure that prepares us for the next step.

Go ahead…

Be BOLD

Don’t stay pecking at the glass above the door – GO THROUGH IT!

Every day leaders know that by taking that first step, by walking through the door, by leaving the safety net and being bold they become better people. They succeed far greater than they could have imagined and they make a difference in the lives of others.

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The Every Day Leader: Behind the Scenes of the Unseen

“Being unseen is not the same as unimportant” (Lance Witt)

I am not mechanically inclined. I have kids that are, but for some reason my brain just does not think that way. I do however, get the importance of assembling ALL the pieces to something, no matter how small. I get that a light fixture can look terrific – but if there is faulty wiring it changes everything.

The things that are not seen, the small parts, the wiring….they are important, even essential.

Our lives are no different.

Not everyone will play a role in the limelight, or be a leader by position. And if they do, it may not be lasting. Our culture says that being someone important is what life is all about; it is having an important title or position. If you are important you usually have money and status. Society says your life means something when you have these things.

We are drawn to what is seen, not the unseen. We are drawn to those in the spotlight. We are a nation that loves to watch the Royals, celebrities, follow Trump and Warren Buffet, and even follow and seek out famous worship leaders.

We equate “being a somebody” as important. And equally so, if you are behind the scenes you are a “nobody” and somehow you are unimportant. Many of us buy into that thinking. We think that since we have not succeeded in life in the limelight then we are just not as important even though we have lived quietly behind the scenes. The “seen” becomes the people of value and those sought after and the “unseen” people we deem as having no value to give.

I think about my parents. They have lived a quiet life. They have worked hard, been involved in their church and community – behind the scenes. They have spent their lives loving others whenever possible. They did it without thinking. They did not care about the limelight or if they mattered in the eyes of others. They did not buy into our society’s view of success. Life was not about what you did, but who you are.  To them, life was about investing in others quietly, without grandeur and announcing it.

My parents are every day leaders. I look at their life and see a life without a huge amount of material possessions, yet they have lived a full and happy life. Lives that have invested in many others over the years – kids, grandkids, great grandkids, their kid’s friends, their friends, their neighborhood, and their community.  They all love and respect them. This is a testament to a life lived well, a life that did not need fame, title, position, or money to make a difference.

They got it.. little things matter. Those things which what you can’t see… THEY MATTER.

It is this principle they have modeled to me my whole life. It’s what every day leaders do. They influence the lives of the people that they come in contact with and those around them.

What is your life about? Are you caught up in being a somebody of importance? Do you think your life is meaningless if you don’t have a great job, money, position, or title?

It is the behind the scenes people who often have a tremendous impact on others. Life is not about them – they don’t care about position or being in the center. They live their life in such a way that the limelight doesn’t matter. They get that stuff: their job, money, and more – do not equal success and likewise, without it does not equal failure.

They are comfortable in their own skin, comfortable in how God made them and how they are wired and that makes them successful in everything they do.

Every day leaders influence – sometimes quietly. They love quietly. They invest in others without attention to what they are doing. They know that what is often unseen, matters.