Leadership Summit Thoughts From The Heart Day Seven
DAY SEVEN: SUCCESS
Where did this word originate and how in the world can there possibly a definition for it? Is it an image or a state of being? I mean, how do you measure it? Things, people, and opportunities can appear successful and be a complete façade and likewise something can appear to be ho-hum yet be so full of beauty and substance. Take a great book for instance, with a not so great cover. It’s interesting how the word success is so widely used but the perception of success to the viewer and how they define success can create an entirely different perspective all together.
Where in the world and I going with this?
To the drawing board, to the main nucleus and root of this entire series. Success begins in our mind. It starts with a thought and then transforms into a belief. The belief becomes so strong we begin to act or abandon the urge. As we act, we move down a new path. A new path yields a new view. A new view gives new insight and so on and so forth.
Imagine taking out a blank sheet of paper right now, and asking yourself what you are being told to do in your spirit over the next few months. Well, that was me three months ago. There was no Summit and it wasn’t part of a plan or marketing strategy. In fact, it scared me a bit because I questioned if people would invest in a general topic of “Intentional Leadership”.
How many of us get brilliant ideas everyday only to daydream, smile, and get excited for a few hours or a few days and then sit on it? Part of success, from the perspective of let’s just stay moving beyond procrastination to completion, is comprised of a few things I witness from the leaders at our summit.
1. Belief. Belief that they were worthy of the experience.
2. Sacrifice. They were willing to be uncomfortable and give up something to experience something new.
3. Follow Through. When distractions and obstacles arose, some shrunk back while others pushed forward.
4. Intention. Each leader understood that this was an intentional decision to connect and tap into something greater for themselves and their vision.
5. Vulnerability. The courage to share allowed others to see them for who they were not what they may have appeared to be. Being courageous meant being open. Each person chose to trust us with their vulnerability.
6. Excellence. Each speaker provided such substance, actual websites, documents, and potential pitfalls to avoid. Operating in excellence does not mean perfection. It means doing the best that you can at that moment, which could look a bit different from day to day.
7. Accountability. At various moments when someone wanted to quit, shrink back, or stand behind, there was a leader within arm’s reach or voice reach that became proactive in standing behind the other person in doubt. When Lorea Sample questioned the power of her message, or when leaders wanted to give up in barre class, or stand behind as we boarded the Ferris wheel, there was always someone saying, ‘I will help you’. We can’t be our best alone. Make sure you have someone in your corner.
8. Trust. Trusting that all things and lessons, including disappointments are preparing you for the next chapter, is critical and requires a commitment to a healthy thought process. As Rose taught us, the Power of First Thought, is beyond measure. Life is reflecting your thoughts back to you, THINK OF YOUR POWER, ESSENCE, and GREATNESS. Prune anything else that tries to rear its ugly head. You have that control.
9. Gratitude. Being grateful for the people, lessons, and opportunities as you flow, allows you to experience the journey without missing the essence of it, as you work towards the goal. Maria Proctor professed her gratitude the entire weekend. As she went to get in the car to be escorted back to the hotel for departure, I stopped the car and handed her 3 tall sunflowers. It was an unspoken gesture of my admiration for her. She’s a longtime client that I have watched embrace her next chapter. 3 symbolizes Past, Present, and Future; and Gratitude allows us to see the sunshine in each phase, no matter what it may look like.
10. Service. As we rise, we must lift others. As we learn, we must share. As we grow, we must serve. The climb or road of success is all about the difference we are making in the world. Many times people are searching for their purpose, never acknowledging that the conversations and their mere existence is serving someone daily. It’s up to us to recognize it and become even more intentional about the level in which we serve. Giving from a healthy place takes time as well, but the beauty of success is that it is up to each of us and only us, to decide what that truly is within.
Servant Leader, Lisa Price, Founder of Carol’s Daughter, once posted the question, “ARE YOU YOUR OWN TOXIN”? It stopped me in my tracks. Many times it’s not the people or jobs in our lives that are delaying success. It’s our decision or lack of courage to make a new one, which creates toxin and mistrust within ourselves. This is because ignoring our truth and allowing ourselves to suffer in silence breaks trust in ourselves to do what is best for ourselves, so we leave it up to other people and become resentful of the toxin in which we are creating within. Once we are willing to admit this truth, we can embrace our next chapter which in itself is a form of success, inner growth, peace, and transformation.
I challenge you to ask yourself how you define success and how you display this within yourself. Servant Leadership isn’t about leading without a title but through how we serve the world. It isn’t measured by the number of lives we impact, but yet the intention to share something that will help move someone else closer to their goals and purpose.
As I conclude this seven day series on the Leadership Summit, Delmar Johnson comes to mind. During one of our consulting sessions or phone calls, I remember asking Delmar why she was so overwhelmed with frustration. She said, “I want to be a finisher. I want to finish my book”. It may seem light as you read those words, but they were so heavy and full of passion it was if I could feel all of her frustration rushing through the phone. I said, “Delmar, send everything you have already journaled to an editor or writer that you know and trust and ask them to begin organizing what you have into chapters. Once you have an accountability partner to pass the torch to, so to speak, you will be sure to complete your book”. She did and for that reason I smile when I think of Delmar.
Not only does she exemplify success in my heart because she is a true servant of people and one of the best HR Recruiters I have met, but over the last five years she has displayed every trait that came to my heart writing this post. It is my hope that you will also define success on your terms and decide that you are worthy of finishing because your light will surely inspire someone else, just as I hope my light has inspired you. Do it less than perfect. The price of procrastination is not worth the lives waiting for your gift.
With love and gratitude,