Self-leadership has become a forgotten trait in our society. However, leadership is an essential need for the stabilization of our world.
When we go through the news, we see endless symptoms of a lack of leadership in our society. All the chaos, wars, the destabilization of West Africa and a debilitating economy in the world; all of those are the symptoms while the root cause is a lack of leadership.
Oftentimes, when we look at leadership, we make an assumption that leadership is considered to be essential only if you are an office bearer or a public servant who works for civil society. However, leadership, on the contrary, is a personal trait that we first need to develop in ourselves as individuals. So we develop self-leadership because we are the change we desire to see in our world and we are the change we want to see in our families.
Therefore, it is of incredible importance to acquaint everyone of us to be leaders of our own in order to be effective in carrying out responsibilities of our personal and professional lives, as well as the responsibility of being an active citizen for our local community.
Africa is what it is due to a leadership crisis focusing on criminal wars like Boko Haram and Syria’s rebels in the region of the North and Western parts of Africa.
Hence, self-leadership is the essence of every human being having the courage to steer the wheel of their lives into the direction that he or she desires for the sake of a desirable outcome in the future. Let’s look at the ways to develop self-leadership with these five steps:
1. Be authentic with yourself
Being authentic with yourself is taking into full account of who you really are and drafting your personal SWOT analysis and working on yourself. Working on yourself means understanding your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Through navigating your capacity as an individual, you will grow in realizing your true identity by understanding your image to its fullest.
2. Live with standards
One of the ways at which societal pressure prevails against most people is the lack of standards and ethical values of oneself. In order to be your own leader, you need to have standards that identify with your identity. Standards are guidelines that you conduct yourself with in terms of knowing what is acceptable to you and what is not, and this mentality establishes you to live in a way that distinguishes you. For instance, one of my personal standard is to refuse to live an uncommitted life. This means when I have a project, I fully commit to it and have it completed within an expected time frame.
3. Live within your means
Too many people are pursuing a life which is not meant for them by trying to please others. That becomes the downfall of many people, because living within your means requires every individual to understand that you have to budget, you have to spend correctly and you have to use your money for what you need to advance your own life. For instance, if you earn $ 2000 a month, you cannot live a lifestyle which costs you more than that. Living within our means is to willingly commit ourselves to a lifestyle that is strict on budgeting in that regard.
4. Learn to say NO
In life, in order to be taken seriously, we ought to realize that we are not a doormat; we are also entitled as individuals to say “no” to certain things and people without feeling guilty about it. In essence, do not do anything that you will not be happy about! Learning to say “no” also motivates you to live a life with no regrets; this means you are taking charge of the steering wheel of your life. For example, having the courage to live beyond peer pressure and choosing a life which is fitting your unique purpose.
5. Search for your purpose
Searching for your purpose requires you to spend time introspecting yourself and constantly defining yourself. Discovering yourself means, you live a life driven by your passions. Otherwise, if we live a life without purpose, we will surely live a meaningless life. As Mark Twain once said: “The greatest day of your life is the day you were born and when you discovered why.”
In conclusion, these five steps will distinguish you from the rest and set you on a journey of discovery to unearth the you that lies within you.