The Every Day Leader: Keep on Walking

We just celebrated mothers day….I had a great day with my kids, talking to my mom on the phone, and enjoying the day.  It  was a day that makes me thankful for my family!

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Holidays and special occasions are also a time that can remind us that things may not always be as we have planned.  There are often subtle things that seem to jump out to say that life doesn’t unfold the way we expected it to.  This is true in my life – it has taken lots of turns that I never expected.

Maybe it is a broken dream, a broken relationship, things at work, or financial struggles; whatever it is…life is often unpredictable.

Our journey can be  filled with unexpected twists and turns along the way and the holidays often bring it to the surface.

What about your life?  Has it taken some unexpected turns that are hard for you to get past?  Are you stuck?

Like anything else, we have to intentionally choose.

We choose what we focus on.

We choose to see the positive instead of the struggle.

We choose to walk through the hard stuff, instead of run away.

We choose to keep going, knowing there is always an end in sight.

We choose, because we know that it is up to us.

We choose because we know that nobody else can do it for us.

We know that as we keep walking we are growing.  We are learning.  We are changing.  We keep walking to become better.

We choose.

When we choose, we know that with each step we take  it not only changes us, but it can make the difference in the life of another.

It’s the power of influence.  It is touching the lives of those around us.  It ‘s what we do as every day leaders.  Choosing.  Walking.  Growing.  Changing.  Impacting.  Even when the path has taken a different turn!

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The Every Day Leader: How are you?

I  ran into her unexpectedly.   It had been months since I had seen her.  I stopped, looked her in the eyes and simply asked how she was doing.  Returning the look, the first words out of her mouth were, “thank you so much for asking, and meaning it, you will never know what that means to me”.   

A simple question can speak volumes to how you care about another.

We never know what is going on in someones life.  We have no idea if  they are struggling with a:

Relationship issue

Family problems

Caring for a loved one

Financial issues

Discouragement

Lack of purpose

Hurt

We often don’t see the bag on their back filled with all kinds of heavy rocks that are weighing them down. Rocks of disappointment, discouragement, hurt, and more. We do know that a simple act of kindness, as simple as looking them in the eye and caring – can make all the difference in their world.

It lightens the load.

Knowing that someone cares, really cares, can make all the difference to some one who is hurting.  They no longer feel that they are carrying everything alone,  especially when it feels like they cannot take another step.

Are you being intentional to speak to those around you? To address them by their name and to ask how they are?

It’s what Every Day Leaders do. It means physically showing you care.  It is what makes a difference to those around us.

 

 

 

The Every Day Leader: The Suitcase

There is something about old suitcases that just draw us in. They could be on display at an antique store or being used, no matter what, they always seem to get our attention.  So often we want to know the stories of their travels through the generations. It was not that long ago that trips took great planning, and the mode of transportation was on rough dirt roads as the horse-drawn buggies pulled both passengers and luggage to their destination.

Today we have it much easier.  A trip can be planned on the spur of the moment and still be enjoyable. We can check destinations, weather, activities, and so much more on our smart phones. Everything we need is  instantly at our fingertips.

As I write this I gaze at the old suitcases decorating my hallway.  These old suitcases moved my family long ago.  Yet, I am reminded that suitcases  can also symbolize much more than just travel, they represent the change in our lives.   For many of us change is difficult, we would rather hold on tight then let go and take the risk.

Today our lives are constantly in motion.  Yet when it comes time for a change do we know it is time to move on? Often times we remain where we are in our lives simply because it is comfortable.  Does it feel safer to avoid risk? Perhaps we have a new idea but fear it may not work, so we stay quiet.  We wonder how much of an impact we alone can have.  So we remain just as we are.  The road of change feels different.  Being safe feels better.  Less risk is easier.  So we do nothing. 

I love the story of Moses.  A man who stuttered, yet led the people out of Egypt.  An everyday man who was willing to be obedient.  He traveled. He led.  It meant big change and it was risky.   He was willing to step out, accept the risk and see what happened.  Our history books are filled with everyday people who have been willing to do the same. 

How about you?   The suitcase is just the reminder.  You  may already know if it is time for a change.  Deep down you know.  A career change?  Finding purpose in your life?  A relationship?  Reaching out to another?  Perhaps, you have found it easier to stay put. To keep the suitcases all stacked up nice and neat just like I have in my hallway.  They look good, but are serving no real purpose.

What will you do?  Living a life with intention is a life that searches and asks the question, what should I be doing differently?  How can my life count?  I like the reminder of the suitcases.

I want to be that everyday leader that is:

Willing to pick up and go

To move when necessary

To make a difference