In our mortal life when we are born we have a niche made for ourselves in this world. We are born into a world where we have no control over what our ethnicity, religion or nationality might be. We have a frame in which we are captivated by labels. These labels are our driving forces. They ingrain in our brains what we how, how we do it, why we do it etc.
Now imagine this- you are in an accident. Your friend and you have received some injuries. Before you go and help your friend you need to help yourself first. Only then, can you get out of that situation. Thinking about yourself first is not selfish but necessary. This is what the airhostess tells us in case of unfortunate events in an airplane. First use the oxygen mask on yourself and then help others. Self leadership is often times confused as a sign of a selfish person. It is not. Unless and until you break out of your pre-determined labels you cannot perform to your optimum levels.
In his highly engaging TEDxUCLouvain Talk, Lars Sudmann- leadership advisor and award winning lecturer breaks down self leadership into three parts, all of significance importance-
· SELF AWARENESS – Recall who is a leader you like/don’t like. Compare your actions to their actions and adapt those qualities that will benefit you in the long run. Self awareness is the foundation of personal growth and success. Only when we reach that point in life can we be the person we desire to be. Self awareness is the fundamental to understanding ourselves perfectly. According to Robin Sharma one of the most important of all personal leadership is self awareness.
· SELF RESOLUTION – If getting frustrated, gauge the importance of the issue in hand and act accordingly. Self resolution means a desire to sort out your life problems. It can lead to a positive work environment for you as well as others. Intention is the firm decision to do or not do something. Communication is the key here. Have an idea of what to achieve and listen to other’s opinions as well. Express your views clearly and if possible be more realistic.
· SELF REFLECTION - Human self reflection is the capacity of humans to exercise introspection and the willingness to learn more about their fundamentals, nature, purpose and essence. Contemplating just for two to five minutes in a day asking yourselves question like who am I, what do I want, helps you to gain a better understanding of your emotions, strengths, weaknesses and driving factors.
Contrary to popular opinion, leadership is not a reserved position for a particular group of people who were elected or appointed, ordained or enthroned. Leadership is self made, self inculcated and then exposed through a faithful, sincere and exemplary life. — Israelmore Ayivor
SELF LEADERSHIP AND SELF DISCOVERY DEVELOPMENT IN DAILY LIVES –
Learn how to walk your talk. No one wants to follow the example of a messy person; one who blames others and always has an excuse ready. Authentic leaders know themselves first. Self leadership helps them in being disciplined and to lead others effectively. Warren Bennis says ‘you can’t be a leader until you know who you are; it’s as simple as that.’
Lead by example. Show other’s that if you can do it, then they can do it as well. Complete the work that you had to do, help others, solve their problems. Show them how to a leader.
Answer the following questions and retrospect –
1. Am I doing everything that I had made my mind about doing today?
2. Am I taking decisions that help others as well as me?
3. How can I resolve any conflict of interests?
4. What are my strengths and weaknesses?
5. What qualities do I have that enable me to lead?
6. What is my purpose in life?
This exercise can be a very powerful tool to help you to know yourself better and to inculcate good habits of leadership in yourself and do away with the bad ones.
Often times what we psychologically think doesn’t translate to real life well. Thomas J Watson says “Nothing so conclusively proves a man’s ability to lead others as what he does from day to day to lead himself.” Take one day at a time. These habits take time to inculcate and be a part of our daily lives. And once you adapt to them it will be easy to lead life a disciplined life.
SUCCESS AND SELF DISCIPLINE –
The one special quality that you can be sure to lead you to success is self discipline. Out of all the qualities and principles that you have developed over the ages, this one trait of yours will do more to assure that you accomplish wonderful things with your life than anything else. If not achieved to a higher degree, it is made impossible to ever achieve what you truly are made for achieving or even have a good work ethic if at all. Our beloved Ranchordas Chanchad said “Pursue excellence and success will come following you. Pants down.” I don’t think anyone can ever put it more understandingly. Excellence is a state of being outstanding or extremely good. With excellence comes success and success comes hand in hand with self discipline.
All those unsuccessful people that you see around yourself are just those people who are undisciplined and lacking self control in life. Unable to control their urges, they go down a path of failures with no one around to remember them or even talk about them. When you develop the same high level of goal setting mixed with personal discipline you will soon begin to achieve the same level of success as the people you often look up to. All the excellence in life is preceded by months and even years of control on urges and disciplined path towards your goals. The quality of it is something which comes only after you introspect yourself and make conscious effort towards personal growth and betterment. Rest assured, your success isn’t far away if your self destructive nature is.