Nelson Mandela’s stated that “There is no passion to be found playing small… in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”
However, I struggled with this everyday when I noticed the misconception that this may have become synonymous with being a driven person in the minds of some. There is nothing wrong with having a drive though. What transforms that drive into something undesirable is when we go to any length to get what we want.
With this mindset, it becomes very difficult to lead. People may feel exploited because all you want is something that they have; skills, expertise, or connection. In this case, the end ‘justifies’ the means. The end game in this scenario is most probably measured by what you have; money, position or other material possessions. They become what I call positional leaders.
Authentic leaders, on the other hand, have a very different mindset. It is powered by a deep sense of purpose that is inspired by growing and helping other people. They have a calling. They know who they are and operate from their heart and soul. I think this is what Mandela was referring to.
They are not driven by what they have ownership of. They jealously embrace the concept of stewardship. And that’s who I am working hard to become every waking minute of my life.
What motivates me?
When I have the right motivation, guiding the call comes into sharp focus. True growth comes through those who strengthen their resolve to stay focused on my calling. You will need to find motivation from situations or people that care and matter to realize your dreams. What you can imagine in your mind can happen, only if you do it from a point of honesty and genuineness.
The other fancy term for imagination is a a vision. “Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.” ~Albert Einstein. Your vision should be so strong, so desirous that you can’t but work towards it. Develop the right vision, it is the bedrock of your mission.
Am I learning?
Knowledge has to be developed without fear. Now more than ever, I have to build my body of knowledge and critique the known, whether positive or negative. I am an ambassador to those I serve. My calling is to grow myself so that they may thrive.
Without taking time to learn, your mission can quickly become stuck! Smokescreens will be thrown at you that may dim or obliterate your vision. When these changes and obstacles come, only those who have anticipated them will survive. “In a time of turbulence and change, it is more true than ever that knowledge is power.” ~John F. Kennedy. Stay thirsty for knowledge, it will support your mission and clarify your vision.
How do I spend my time?
Time is a gift and managing it is essential! I need to budget it according to my priorities and understand my limits. A year ago, I was hardly taking time out to recharge and rest. This left me tired and irritable. As I move forward, it is evident that I can’t give what I don’t have! I am taking more time to rest and build myself so that I can effectively train and guide others.
However, I am still working hard to stay focused on my goals and managing my time more effectively. I struggle with this every waking minute of my life. There are many ‘attractive’ side-shows that try to grab my attention. I need to spend my time right people who will encourage me along my mission. The people I invest in should keep me accountable to my vision, no matter how painful that might be.
Do you have anything that is ‘stealing’ your calling? I would love to hear from you…
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