Are you a leader? Think about that for a second, but before you answer, let me ask you a few other questions. Who is in charge of your life? Do you get to choose how you want to feel? Do you believe that you have any say in how your life turns out?
Believe it or not, every one of us is a leader. You don't have to be in a managerial position or have power over other people to consider yourself a leader. We are leading our own lives every single day. The decision to not lead is still a decision, and ironically it is not possible.
Many people believe that they're not leaders because they feel like they're not in control of their own lives. They blame outside circumstances for their position in life and blame other people's actions for their emotional outbursts. But the truth is, the only person they should blame is themselves. Learning to take responsibility is the first step towards authentically being the leader of your life.
When you learn to take responsibility, you take back control. Having control isn't as glamorous as it sounds though, but it's still worth having. Also, this approach isn't always so easy to do.
Imagine that you were driving perfectly and following all the traffic laws when all of a sudden someone runs into you with their car. You did nothing wrong, so who should you blame? Well, you should blame yourself. Why? Because you could have done some things differently. If you left your house a little bit earlier or had taken a different route, maybe it wouldn't have happened, or perhaps it would. Either way, taking responsibility puts the control back in your court. The behavior of taking responsibility will help you actively self-reflect more often which provides insight and information on what could do differently and that gives you the power to readily improve the quality of your life.
Leaders make decisions. Do you make decisions? Take a second and answer that question out loud.
Did you yes, no, maybe, or nothing at all? Well no matter what you chose or did, those are all decisions. The decision to not make a decision might not be the greatest choice, but it still is a decision nonetheless.
Leaders are aware that life is all about making decisions and that every decision has an impact on every facet of their life. Where you choose to eat, what food choices you make, the company you keep, and how you spend your leisure time aren't always seen as important choices, but if you only knew how monumentally important each simple decision was, you would start to take a much closer look how you lead your life.
An easy decision might seem simple in concept, but the outcome of that decision can be much more than you bargained for or it could be the catalyst you needed to help you reach your goals. Decisions matter and an essential part of being a leader is choosing to consciously make a decision rather than letting life randomly make one for you.
Another thing that leaders do is they lift the spirits up of the people around them. They put others first and themselves second. They talk to customers, their boss, or even their employees from a place of service. They spread positivity and focus on solutions rather than problems.
Everyone loves the positive person who shows up and lights the room up and the ones who don't, well they're dealing with their own issues and using you as a scape-goat. Pay them no mind. Positivity is contagious, and maybe your positivity will rub off on that negative person and eventually help them see life in a better light. Who knows, your decision to be a positive role model could completely change the life of an unknowing stranger or good friend.
The positivity all starts from a place of service. Being positive all the time is fun, but it's also hard work. It takes personal sacrifice. You have to find the energy to stay a buzzing; you need to deal with other people's negative attacks and stories and find a way to dodge and duck them while still actively listening and communicating. Leaders acknowledge negativity and then immediately discard it. There's no room in a leader's mind for thinking negatively. Leaders get accused of not being a realist, but that's not true. Leaders keep it real. They understand that life isn't always going to be a bucket of sunshine and roses, but they consciously choose to view life in that way because with that kind of mindset it's easier to spot an opportunity and stay afloat when things get tough, which they inevitably always do.
So I ask you again, are you a leader? I hope this time you proudly said yes because that is the first step to become the conscious leader of your life and when your consciously leading your life new possibilities and opportunities will start appearing faster than you think.