“Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.” -Jim Rohn Good leaders make it their responsibility to learn about themselves from their successes and failures. They know their values and their abilities, and they remain true to both. It’s this self-knowledge which enables them to move ahead with confidence. Confident leaders face challenges dealing with people who live by their feelings, and lack the necessary values to guide them. Thinking with their emotions makes them susceptible to peer pressure, causing them to be inconsistent in their decision making. With such internal inconsistencies, what values can they possibly be true to? Life isn’t Fair So Don’t Compare “When you know who you truly are, the need to compare yourself to others would become highly unnecessary.” ― Edmond Mbiaka You have no need to compare yourself to others. Self-awareness builds self-confidence. If you’ll be better today than you were yesterday, your self-confidence will become self-generating. Psychologist Jennifer Campbell wrote "having high self-esteem can be associated with having a clear sense of yourself and knowing who you are." (1) How you see and feel about yourself (good or bad) is under your control. Knowing how and why you think and act as you do, is your first step toward leading with confidence. There are numerous studies about the impact a person's self-belief has on their self-esteem. It’s reported that people with an accurate understanding of who they are, tend to have higher levels of self-esteem than those who do not. How You Relate to Others is Determined by How You Relate to Yourself "The better you know yourself, the better your relationship with the rest of the world.” -Toni Collette Over the years you've developed positive and negative attitudes about yourself and others. Depending on how you've processed and internalized your experiences, you'll be guided by either a high level of confidence, or hindered by self-limiting beliefs. It’s for this reason your level of self-awareness is crucial when it comes to relationships. People with high self-awareness tend to do better relationally, and their interactions in group or team settings also tend to be more productive. Why? because knowing who you are makes you confident in your opinions, and less susceptible to peer pressure. “If Knowledge is Power, Wisdom is Priceless” -JSP Knowing and accepting who you are, where you're going, and why, empowers you to identify and break self-limiting beliefs. Knowing who you are and who you're not, liberates you to naturally express your likes/dislikes, concerns, hopes and desires, without internalizing the responses. With conviction, your "yes" will be yes, and your "no" will be no. You'll manage your emotions when dealing with a crisis, you'll be less reactionary and more intentional with your responses. Knowing how and why you process information as you do, leads to making better and more informed decisions. "If you're not willing to learn, no one can help you. If you're determined to learn, no one can stop you." - Zig Ziglar A trusted mentor, or coach, can help you through the process, so you can lead with greater confidence. Begin by asking yourself these questions
What do you enjoy doing? Are you good at doing it? Would others agree?
What things are you most passionate about, and why?
Do you have a dream you’d like to fulfill?
Are you confident you can make that dream happen? Why or why not?
What do want to be remembered for?
What can you start doing now to work toward leaving an inspiring legacy?
Do you love and accept who you are? What would you change about yourself?
What are your core values? How well have they worked for you?
Who’s been the most positive influential person in your life?
Which of their traits do you admire most? Have you tried to emulate them?
(1) Self-esteem and clarity of the self-concept. by Jennifer D. Campbell (Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Vol 59(3), Sep 1990)
*** This article was authored by John Picarello, Chief Leadership Officer at Lions Pride Leadership Co.***