What does it take to be a leader? Many of us get uncomfortable at the thought of “leading.”
Who me? I’m not a leader. I’m just me… Just.
Welcome to our first article in the three part series on Overcoming Fear of Leadership. Be sure to check out all three to get some great tools!
Many of us see leaders only as people who facilitate meetings, speak in front of groups, and manage teams of people. We have reserved the term “leader” for only the most impressive people we look up to, and they often have other titles, such as “President” or “CEO,” associated with them. We build the accomplishments of these people up in our minds to being something unattainable to “ordinary” people. We place our leaders on a pedestal, and in the process we lower our own self-image by comparing ourselves with our heroes.
This line of thinking is very counterproductive, both for us AND the people we admire, and it’s time to shift this trend. These ideas break us down rather than building us up.
There is no “just you.”
You are awesome! You have a spark. You have ideas and passions that are unique and need to be shared. By living your life through your passion and vision you improve your life, your immediate environment, and every life that your passion touches. You are a leader, and you can develop your leadership skills easily.
Guess what… Leaders are people, too, and not all leaders are standing at the head of the room. Everyone (yes, that means you) can be a leader in their own way. There are a lot of different kinds of leadership roles, types, and skills. The key is finding your forte. Being a leader does not mean you have to be on your A-game all of the time. It simply means putting your passion out there, often in an attempt to help others. You can learn about my favorite model of leadership types in my Blog on Catalytic Leadership Styles. These leadership roles and descriptions can help you learn to value all contributions, especially your own.
I have a great little bookkeeping firm called Polymath, LLC in Ashland, Oregon. Polymath’s vision is to make the world a better place, built on a foundation of thriving small businesses. Picture a world where everyone you know is doing what they love and loving what they do. Picture a world where we truly vote with our dollars, supporting and being supported by the people, products, and services that make us happy and fulfilled. By helping our small businesses thrive, we create jobs, improve our local economies, and get to live in healthier communities. That makes everyone happier, and when the people around us are happy, we’re happy. That is the world that I want to live in.
Be sure to check out the next article in this series on Overcoming Fear of Leadership to find out how we apply our passion to our leadership and how we don’t let our fears get in our way.