The need for fully healthy and strong leaders seems to be increasing. The reason is too many leaders are crippled by their habits. Leaders by nature deeply want to help people, that’s why they are leaders. Yet we get into certain habits we don’t even realize. There are 3 habits that cause leaders to hobble around as if they were on crutches and never seem to heal or through those crutches away.
Crippling Habit #1—Comparing – Focus on others
- Never leads to excellence
- Determines the least common denominator
- “…At least I’m not like him…”
- “…Why does she get all the good stuff…”
- Hides what you have
- Focus is on their progress not on yours
- Their path becomes your boundary
- Called keeping up with the joneses
- Demands a winner – you ultimately win they loose.
- Or you compare yourself to those who are better and you become defeated
It is not Goodness to be better than the worst – Seneca
I often find myself in the midst of other men and women doing what I do. When I get around them I am tempted to compare myself to them. Their circumstances, experience, and surroundings cannot possibly match mine. It will always be an unfair comparison.
Crippling Habit #2—Criticizing – Focus on Self
- Form of Pride
- You think you can do it better than others
- Put you up above the one you criticize
- Critical spirit is different than critique
- Critical spirit skews your perception
- Focus on the negative over the positive
- Points out the wrong and never sees the right
Getting into the habit of criticizing clouds your perception and vision. Criticizing leads to excuses and blame shifting. It’s a focus on what is wrong over what is right or good.
Crippling Habit #3—Complaining – Focus on Problem
- Makes you the victim
- Is focus on the problem not the solution
- Leaders are problem solvers not problem pointers
- Is the hit and run, drive-by-shooting of organizations.
Complaining keeps you wandering in circles. The Jewish people of the Old Testament (the Bible) wandered around in the desert for 40 years partly because of their habit of complaining.
These three habits are partners. They usually run together and limit, stifle, and eradicate influence in the leader. The leader is left limping from one ineffective meeting to another not accomplishing anything.
3 things to do to stop the habit
- Compare to yesterday – Be better today then you were yesterday
- Evaluate – Ask those around you how you can help.
- Creativity – Solutions come from creative minds not complaining voices.