Monday Mayhem: Be a Leader!

Leadership. It’s a heavy word that carries the weight of expectation. It’s a word that’s been tossed around quite a bit lately as there are various expectations in regards to our country’s leadership.  What does it mean, after all, to be a leader?

I find Drew Dudley’s take on leadership to be unique because he says each one of us has an opportunity to be a leader, but we also have a responsibility to acknowledge those leaders who’ve impacted us. So, “to whom much is given much is required”? Meaning, much is required of the leaders, but much is also required of those who are led! While leaders are often expected to work miracles while the masses passively reap the benefits of their leadership, no one wants to consider the responsibility of the masses. With all of the turmoil and hatred in the news right now I can’t help but wonder where is our responsibility in all of this–“we the people”?

Here’s the question of the day:  How do we operationalize Dudley’s challenge to be “everyday leaders” in light of the crisis of leadership we currently face in this country?

Happy Monday!

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Monday Mayhem: People Watching!

People are watching…

In this day and age, that phrase kind of gives you the creeps, doesn’t it? It’s true, though. I mean, there are cameras everywhere! At special events–birthdays, graduations, weddings–or mundane places–traffic lights, parking lots, bathrooms (selfie anyone?) Let’s face it. This is the generation of visual documentation–of everything! Whether still or moving, life is being captured in pictures and they are worth thousands–of words and dollars–because people are watching. We want to see what other people are doing.

But I’m not here to unpack our need to watch. I’m here to turn the lens, back on us. If we are being watched all the time, my question is what image do we portray? What legacy will we leave? What will be documented by all of the snaps and selfies? If we lay them out before us, what story will they tell?

Maybe we should be organizing our actions the way we organize our term papers–around a central theme or idea–then work towards supporting that theme or idea in every activity and every endeavor so that our story holds together. Then, if people are watching, they may see a comedy or a tragedy. Will they be inspired or disappointed?

If you’re like me, you’d probably like to shun the audience and be left alone with your tragic story, but the reality is, there’s always an audience. Somebody is always watching–kids, spouse, co-workers, friends, enemies, acquaintances, strangers.  You can’t avoid being watched by someone!

I know that sounds creepy, but if it’s inevitable, why not give a good show? No, don’t start peeling out of your shirt, I mean give a good show. Leave a legacy of good. If we can’t dive into our holes and keep to ourselves, then whoever is watching us has the potential to be influenced by us. So, what kind of influence do we want to have on our audience? Do we want to inspire them or depress them? Not that our job is to entertain them, but if they’re watching, we should at least consider that something we say or do will not just affect us, it will also affect them in some way. It may leave an impression, spark an idea–or squash a dream.

Ironically, my selfie could influence someone else’s self. It’s a crazy thought, but because people are watching, it’s true. So, before you post a pic, or spout a harsh word, think about who’s watching and give ’em a good show, will ya? It could make a world of difference!

Happy Monday!

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Get Busy Living!

My sister and I have the unique privilege of sharing our birthday month. Though several years apart, there are only two days between our birthdays, so every year we celebrate together. This year, however, she is celebrating a milestone birthday, which she would prefer I didn’t bring attention to. For some reason this birthday, in particular, has her feeling anxious and her trepidation over this birthday has me thinking about birthdays in general.  I must admit, the older I get, the less excited I am about my birthday too.  Unlike my children who look forward to growing older with great joy, pretty much after 30 growing older became less and less fun for me! Let’s face it, everyone wants to grow up, but no one wants to get old.  But, it’s going to happen to all of us whether we like it or not and as my husband pointed out, nobody wants the alternative either!

So, there has to be a more productive way to look at this birthday thing. If it’s inevitable we have to find a positive spin! I refuse to peer down the tunnel of my future as if it were a deep dark hole of despair! As Morgan Freeman’s character says in the movie Shawshank Redemption I only have two choices: I can either “get busy livin’ or get busy dyin’” and I don’t know about you, but I have a lot more living to do!

So, I see it like this. I’m going to assume that time is like money and I’m going to assume I have at least $100 to spend. I mean, no one knows just how much time they have, but why not plan for the best case scenario? If I’m 40 years old, then it’s like I have $60 left in my account. If I’m 60 years old it’s like I have $40 left. The question is, am I going to cry about the $60 or the $40 I spent already, or am I going to figure out a creative way to spend the money—or time—I  have left?

Get busy livin’ or get busy dyin’…

If you’ll excuse me, I have some time left and some shopping to do!

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Happy birthday to me (and my sis)!

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