Welcome to Diane A-B’s Dialogue! I invite you to join me on this exciting journey as we share our thoughts, experiences, and commentaries on a variety of topics. Here we go…
THE ESSENCE OF LEADERSHIP
I have been thinking a lot about the term leadership! Maybe, this is because I believe we are living in an era of chaotic leadership, or could it be because I believe the leadership compass has shifted greatly in a direction that I find troubling. I am not sure what the reason for my constant thought is; however, as Maria Shriver states “I have been thinking.”
The term leadership has many definitions; however, the one that continues to stand out to me is “leadership involves the ability the inspire others to participate in a common goal.” I don’t remember where I heard this definition; however, it remained with me. The keyword for me in this definition is the word inspire. When I think of leaders who have inspired me the most, one person stands out, “Mother Teresa.” Here, we have a fragile-looking woman, who without the luxury of positional power, a beautifully decorated office, .jetliner, or other such accolades inspired a movement that today goes into one of the poorest areas of the world, Calcutta, India. The primary goal behind the creation of this movement was to make a difference in the lives of the individuals who many of us would be quick to cross the busiest thoroughfare to avoid. Many of us who sow into this movement never met this BOLD and DARING WOMAN and might never visit Calcutta, India; however, we consider it our obligation to contribute to the mission and goal of the Missionaries of Charity. Now that is what I call leadership, and for me, Mother Teresa continues to be an “Essence of Leadership.”
For me, an individual, who is the “Essence of Leadership,” DAREs to be that person who, through their actions and words, inspire others to participate in something that is bigger than themselves. He or she chooses to be innovative, creative, non-conventional, genuine, kind, vulnerable when necessary, willing to support the dreams and goals of others, unapologetic of who they are and what they aspire to become, willing to apologize when necessary, and are definitely unafraid to fail. They are by no means eccentric enigmas, because, I meet and interact with them daily. You see, they are our strong, unsung family members, colleagues, and friends who lead by example, blaze new trails for others to excel, and choose daily to unselfishly contribute to the well-being of others. Some do it boldly, others do it behind the scenes, and others do it unconsciously; however, they all continue to leave their proverbial “footprints on the sands of time.” I DARE you to follow their example – DARE to be an “Essence of Leadership.”
DARE to Chart a New Path in 2021
Each new year inspires us to continue working on ourselves – to set new goals and/or revisit the goals we previously set for ourselves. For a long while, I was that “happy go lucky” person who never took the process of goal setting seriously. Needless to say, this habit was counterproductive to me becoming the best of myself.
Through various life experiences, I came to realize that setting goals provides me with a sense of direction (Archer-Banks, 2019) and helps me to navigate more effectively the various tenets of my busy life. It also provides me with a valuable tool that I can use to measure my successes and identify ways in which I can improve how I execute the various activities in my daily life. Much of the successes, I have experienced over the past 20 years was achieved because I DAREd to set some DARING goals for myself and to actively pursue them. The various journeys toward achieving these goals were sometimes frustrating, however; the ultimate failures and successes along the way made me more knowledgeable, open-minded, and fearless. Les Brown, a renowned author and speaker, reminds us “life takes on new meaning when you become motivated, set goals and charge after them in an unstoppable manner.” Experience taught me we are only able to do so when we have clearly delineated the goals we seek to achieve and consistently work towards achieving them.
As you embrace 2021, and all the wonderful opportunities it has to offer you, I strongly encourage you to spend some time to set some DARING goals for yourself, and then, fearlessly “charge after them in an unstoppable manner.” The journey will be rocky at times, there will be falls along the way, and the naysayers will offer their unsolicited negative viewpoints. However; I encourage you to surround yourself with an inner circle of positive and forthright individuals, get up after each fall and mend the resulting bruises, and more importantly, STAY YOUR CHARTERED PATH TO EXCELLENCE! I AM ROOTING FOR YOU!
May 2021 be the year in which you DARE to become the best of yourself.
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