CHARACTERISTICS OF LIVING LEADERS (Part 6): EXCRETION

15 Sep

“When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; now that I have become a man, I am done with childish ways and have put them aside.” — 1 Corinthians 13:11, AMP

 

As leaders ascend the ladder of effectiveness, they make mistakes, they learn, they discover, adjust and grow. And for young, inexperienced leaders, this is an important phase of the leadership journey.

Yes, you read the topic correctly—leaders excrete. Well…perhaps it’s not what you’re thinking. For this post, the term excretion is used to describe a “getting rid of ____ (insert any silly habit)” process. Therefore, what I actually mean is that leaders get rid of the stuff—habits and assumptions—they find will place a lid on their abilities, limit their influence and have a negative impact on the legacy they desire to leave on the sands of time.

Eagleflair Consulting Ltd. consultant Cecilia Odok observed, “Most of life is habitual: we do the same things repeatedly. There are some habits that are labeled as bad while others are referred to as good.” As soon as they discover any of these negative labels, effective leaders—both young and adult—don’t hesitate to hit the “Delete” button. These labels are in form of heavy baggage of undesirable habits. They simply give up these habits for them to grow up and go up.  They also model the good habits by doing their best to make sure that they constantly put to check these four aspects of their lives. Effective leaders are continually improving . . .

1. Mentally

Everybody obviously feels secure to work with a mentally balanced leader. On the other hand, nobody will like to stay around a leader who has no clue about what to do when things begin to drift off course.

Leaders need a good mental conditioning to lead well and get their team to achieve anything worthwhile. You know the saying, “If the head is sick, the whole body is also ill.” A good mental conditioning allows leaders to think ahead, figure out solutions, solve problems and delegate duties appropriately to the people working with them.

To maintain and improve your mental conditioning, you need to spend less time thinking about problems and more time on positive options that will advance your team. Negative thinking is not only a bad habit; it is toxic and unhealthy. As you develop your leadership skill, remember to put aside negative thoughts and remain upbeat always.

2. Emotionally

Man is an emotional being, and that’s a fact. No matter how hard you try, you cannot “kill” your emotions. That’s how God created us, and we have no choice rather than accept the fact. But, fortunately, the good news is that you can manage your emotions. This is one area every leader finds difficult at first. If you however decide to start keeping a watch on it, and you manage that decision daily, I can assure you that taming your emotions won’t appear to be all that difficult any longer.

People who can handle criticisms, hold on under fire, spring back to their feet after a great fall without losing enthusiasm are said to have strong emotions. People with weak emotions can’t (or if they can, they simply don’t). They have no inner power. They go up and down with life. When things are rosy, you can pick them out of the crowd—yes, that individual over there with a huge smile across his face. Likewise, they aren’t difficult to identify when things start getting tough. They carry this colossal frown on their face as if they’ve never smiled all of their life.

How do you deal with the realities of life? How do you relate with the difficult people on your team? Do you patiently see the situation through their eyes and give them a positive response that tells them that you sincerely understand? Or do you just react immediately without considering the consequences of your actions?

Whenever I find myself in such situations, I often remind myself that it’s time to be tested. It’s either I let my emotions rule me and, sure enough, will get an immediate gratification; or I subscribe to a better option, act like the bigger person and rule over my emotions by focusing on the ultimate goal. Learn to manage your emotions well. Don’t just let your boiling emotions erupt. It could ruin your reputation in less time than it will take the volcanic molten magma to destroy a whole country.

3. Physically

Many youngsters need to be more intentional about improving on this area. It has to do with your appearance. If you desire to make any positive impact in the lives of every person you get the privilege to meet daily, you need not to be told to start showing up like a serious business personnel, responsible congressional representative, and in fact, if you don’t mind, like clergies appear!

I want to encourage you to let go of all the ‘wizzie’ jeans and ‘spaghetti’ dresses for the ‘small boys and chics’ to bubble with. The real ‘big boys and girls’ are often responsible ladies and gentle-men. They appear professional all the time, smart and simple—not gorgeous and gawky.

4. Spiritually

If there is one startling secret I know about great leaders, it will be that they are all spiritual. (Yea, all. And I mean it.) You may never find this in a secular book on leadership, but it’s the secret that is left untold. They draw strength from beyond-human powers. Some occultic. Some divine.

You see, you need to understand that the leader’s true personality is built behind the scenes. Leaders plan and prepare behind closed doors. Some pray to God. Some offer sacrifices to some unknown gods. Whichever way, I’m sure you get my point: great leaders all have a certain spiritual backup.

You and I need to start desiring to know more of God as we make progress on the leadership journey. You need to start learning to put your whole trust in God, constantly reverence His magnificence and keep growing in His grace and in the knowledge of Christ. You need to make a commitment to never disappoint Him in any way. Praise and appreciate Him daily for the privilege to witness the breaking of every day and the numerous opportunities to make a difference in the lives of other people who come your way. Be willing to say “no” to immoral acts—God hates sin! And if we as leaders must have a flawless victory and all-round growth, we must seek the Holy Spirit’s assistance to help us with this. Obviously, the only way a man can become limitless is when he has a limitless Tour Guide as he travels on.

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Reflection: Which of these four areas do you need to improve? Which of them are you already doing great at? Is there any other aspect that will require leaders to use the “Delete” button on for them to reach their potential? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below.

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5 Responses to “CHARACTERISTICS OF LIVING LEADERS (Part 6): EXCRETION”

  1. Garte September 17, 2013 at 09:04 #

    “Every Leader has a spiritual backup”….I like that…its your choice as an individual to choose the kind of leader you wanna become. Hallelujah!

    • David O. Lawal September 18, 2013 at 05:27 #

      @Garte–I’m glad you like the fact that leaders have spiritual backups.

      Thanks for reading the post.

  2. Arogundade, Shina F September 18, 2013 at 22:12 #

    Nice one bro, handling your emotions is a really big one and the way you fixed patience into it was a wonderful one. I remember those days in school when the day has been planned out and a junior or a senior student destroys it(OMG) you feel like killing the fellow but at times when you are patient enough to reason with the fellow or overlook the case, you end up smiling. Once again NICE ONE BRO.

  3. Josiah September 19, 2013 at 22:55 #

    Emotions is wat makes a man,yeah dats right, no matter hw hard we try we can’t kill dat. I wanna start keepin a watch on it and i pray i see changes

    • David O. Lawal September 20, 2013 at 19:17 #

      @Josiah —

      It’s a fact that we can’t kill our emotions, but we can tame them. And that takes discipline.

      I hope you’ll manage your decisions well. I’ll like to learn more about your progress and how the experience of living a more disciplined life is for you.

      Good luck!

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