Archive for the ‘Flawed Leaders’ Category

There are times when we get excited about a big project or big idea and we want to take that proverbial leap of faith and go for it. We take a few running steps, leap toward our goal, and splash! We land short of what we intended and end up either drowning in misery that our big idea didn’t happen or swimming back to shore to figure out how we didn’t land where we wanted to land.

This morning, a link was shared on a private Facebook group that opened my eyes to see why I am standing on the shore all soaking wet. This realization hit me: I took a leap when I should have taken a step. (Here’s the video if you’re interested.)

Brendon Buchard – Experts Academy

A few of the steps that Brendon shared in the video on how to build a buying audience from your expertise included knowing your target customer (which I do), understand their buying behavior (something I need to investigate more), and create a product or service based on your expertise (you’ll have to watch the video to get the all the steps). Even though I did create a product or service, my service is probably too big of a step for people to take as their first step in working with me. Regardless of how good the product or service is or looks, very few would be willing to make a big step until they have taken a smaller step first.

So now that I am standing on the shore letting the sun dry me out, the next STEP I need to take is creating products or services of value with little to no buy-in costs. I will be looking to add some great content to inspire young leaders to thrive and become stronger leaders tomorrow. That is a step in the right direction that won’t leave me soaking wet.

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“Chinook and sockeye salmon from central Idaho…travel over 900 miles (1,400 km) and climb nearly 7,000 feet (2,100 m) from the Pacific ocean as they return to spawn.” Wikipedia

The above photo is as close as any to capturing where I feel like I am right now. Over the last several years, I have spent time preparing myself for a journey back to my first love: inspiring people to greater heights through speaking and training. Just as the salmon know when it is time to return, I decided it was time to go.

When I embarked on this journey, I began to map out my path to reach the goal. The first stretch of the journey was fairly easy to navigate. The farther I travel, the stronger the current becomes. Although I am making progress, it is slowing down as I push against the force flowing toward the ocean.

Now I am finding myself fighting a strong current along with a wall that I need to jump. Not only is the current swift, there is a bear at the top of the wall creating a sense of fear for all those pushing forward. The odds of my making it seem to be stacking up against me.

This is the very place that I am right now. The goal is much farther up the river. Once I reach that place, I will have established the beginning of my legacy and can then relax as I follow the stream back to the ocean and enjoy the rewards of having battled the upstream journey.

The biggest temptation at this point in the journey is to see the bear, turn back, and return empty to the ocean. The story Napoleon Hill shares, “Three Feet From Gold,” rings in my subconscious mind and reminds me to keep pushing forward. (If you are not familiar with this story, Paul Hutchings upload an audio recording of this section of “Think and Grow Rich.” Start it at the 8:00 minute mark for the story.) Intellectually, I know that I am only 3 feet away from the gold. Emotionally, I feel like it is miles and miles away.

The hardest part of this process is to transfer what I know in my head to my heart and inner being to calm the inner turmoil that resides within me.  Therein lies the struggle of an entrepreneur.  I share my thoughts to bear witness to the struggles one faces when we pursue our dreams.  This is only one of many obstacles that are sure to come. Those who persevere and press on will be the ones who LIVE their dreams.

The other night, we had dinner with some friends.  At some point in the conversation, it became known that a mutual friend of the group, and also connected to one of our group members, was dealing with a big issue in life.  Someone remarked: “We all have some issue that we have to deal with in life. For some it is _____ and for others it might be ______.”  You can fill in the blanks, as you and I know most of us do have at least one issue we must work on in our lives.

Great leaders will be aware of their issues and will take measures to work on them.  They will set up measures to help keep it in check.  They will put up safeguards to protect themselves, their career, their family, and their legacy from the negative affects that may come from that issue.

As you finish out this week, did you let your “issue” get the best of you?  What did you do to keep it in check?  If you need to get help, take the time to find the help you need.  Great leaders can and do emerge even from those who are flawed.

I have come to really enjoy Fridays.  This is the one day that I reflect back on the week and take a look at what I accomplished or didn’t accomplish.  I begin to look at what is in store for next week.  It is very easy to not have a “Friday” like this.  One week can roll into the next without any evaluation of where you have been and where you are going.  Before you know it, you have fallen off the wagon.

As I reflect back over the week, I have come to realize that I have fallen short on a couple of my goals.  The wagon continues to roll on while I stand here wondering why I have some bruises and dust all over me from the road.  As I look forward, I see the wagon is still going but I am just sitting here. I am sure that you have experienced this as well in your life at various times.

When this happens, and it will happen to all of us at some point, we have to admit it first.  Once we know we have fallen off, we must know how it happened.  Knowing how we fell off is the key to staying on the wagon so we won’t be as likely to fall off again for the same reason.  Now we just need to identify the path to get back on the wagon.  It may also help if we call upon our support group, those people in our lives who hold us accountable to our goals, and ask for a little help catching up to the wagon.

So now is the time to shake the dust off, get back on our feet, acknowledge why we fell off, and start picking up the pace.  We will catch up to the wagon once again so we can hop back on it.

Let’s Finish Strong by catching up to the wagon so we can move on toward success much faster!