I enjoy seeing and working with people who are passionate about what they do. Their passion and the enthusiasm it creates is contagious.
Passion can be a twin-edged sword however when it’s allowed to overflow into emotional outbursts. You should never use your passion as an excuse for losing control of your emotions. I’ve often heard people apologize by saying, “sorry I got upset and yelled, it’s just that I’m passionate about this.” When passion becomes an excuse it loses its power to make things happen.
But overall, I love passion. When people are passionate about what they do it shows in how they do it. Passionate people are the ones who make a positive difference in the lives of other people. It’s by making that difference that they make the world a better place too.
Passion comes from knowing. Do not expect people to be passionate about the things they know little or nothing about.
That little piece of advice in the last sentence helps keep me from being overly frustrated when working with people who don’t give a darn about their work, their company, their customers or their coworkers.
They have never invested the time required to develop the empathy that comes from knowing other points of view. They have empathy for what they know and they only know themselves.
While it’s frustrating to work with people who don’t care, especially when you do, you can’t make the mistake of allowing their lack of passion to suck the passion out of you.
You will need to “re-dream your dream” from time to time. Consider where your passion originally came from and revisit that place often.
Never lose your passion for what you do and the positive affect it has on people. Remember that when the positive passion goes out the door your positive attitude won’t be far behind.
I dare you to lead…from right where you are. I dare you to lead…with just the skills you have available to you today. I dare you to lead…with the title and position you have today…even if you have no title and no position. I dare you to lead…this very minute!
We don’t need more leaders in the world. What we need is for more leaders to lead. Most leaders today are leaders in waiting. They are waiting for the title that will make them a leader. They are waiting for “leadership skills” to somehow magically appear. They are waiting for the right “opportunity” to come along and then they will spring into leadership action.
For some of the leaders the waiting may seem necessary. Others know that they are simply procrastinating. Still others are hiding from their fear of failing as a leader behind the safety net of waiting.
Whatever their reasons the waiting is usually an excuse. No one who possesses the ability to influence another person need wait one more second. They can chose to lead right now, today.
Nothing makes you a leader but leading. Don’t buy into the myth that you need a lofty position or a fancy sounding title to lead. No title, no position, no timing and no opportunity can make you a leader.
You must decide to lead. When you suddenly start leading there may be people in your sphere of influence who are offended. Lead anyway.
People like me can’t really “teach” leadership. We can only talk about how to lead. We can only explain the common characteristics of authentic leaders. We can only describe the frequently repeated mistakes of poor leaders.
But the only way to truly learn how to lead is to lead. Deal with your mistakes along the way, learn from them and lead better the next day. If you’re waiting until you are comfortable with your leadership skills and completely confident in your leadership abilities, then you may never lead at all.
Authentic Leaders are often less than comfortable and completely confident with all the decisions they make and all the actions they take. They lead anyway!
There has never been a great leader who was great on their first day of leading. Everyone learns along the way. Don’t wait until you think you’re good enough. Begin leading today and dedicate yourself to working hard to become the leader you’ve been waiting to become.
I dare you!