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Daily Leadership Thought #190 – Be The Change You Want To See…


When asked to provide criticism of what’s not working in their organization, most people can provide a litany of complaints and problems.  There seems to be no shortage of opinions on how things should or could be better.  This doesn’t just take place in the business world.  It is a facet of every day life.   For some reason, despite our relative wealth, comfort and prosperity compared to previous generations, most of us still see things for what they are not, rather than being thankful for what they are.  This is clearly evident in the cottage industry that has become the self-help movement.  I”ve lost count of the number of people I meet who admit to being “lost” and/or unhappy with their current situation.

The problem with deficit thinking is that it stunts your perspective.  There are no silver bullets.  Instead of allowing you to see the world full of possibility and opportunity (which it is), you begin to define yourself and circumstances in smaller ways than necessary.   When you are a collection of individuals, as all organizations are, this mindset becomes even more problematic.  Just imagine how much positive energy and creativity seeps out of businesses every single day due to people having cynical attitudes and/or a victim mentality. 

When you look to others to solve your problems and make you happy, you are already at a disadvantage.  You end up forfeiting control of your own destiny and hope that someone else will make your issues a priority.  Even the best intentioned of leaders, colleagues, spouses and friends will only ever get an incomplete grade in this regard.  They will often do their best and work hard at it, but ultimately they are not you and can’t always read your mind and anticipate your needs.

Accountability for your success and happiness starts with you.  Only you can control your attitude and reaction to what life throws at you.  We’ve heard it many times before, but “one person’s problem is another’s opportunity.”   Every day we get to make a choice.  Do we become a force for positive change and make the best of our circumstances?  Or, do we become a malcontent and have little to show for our efforts except further disappointment and angst?  Obstacles and adversity will always be with us.  It is a fact of life.

There are no perfect leaders, organizations, marriages or friendships.  They are all a work in progress.  No one lives a perfectly charmed life devoid of difficulty.  The question is and always will be, “what are you going to do about it?”    Don’t succumb to the chronic disappointment and victim mentality of the masses.  Be the change you want to see in the world and in yourself.  Take full responsibility for your career, relationships and life.   Everyone can tell you why things don’t or won’t work out.  Few of us, tackle these issues head on and actually change things for the better.

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2 Responses

  1. Good positive thinking, Ed. Thanks for motivating us to not dwell on the negative. It’s human nature to want to excel to some degree, to see what is possible, push the envelope and, unfortunately, to compare yourself and your accomplishments with others even when it isn’t ‘apples to apples’. However, the important thing to note is that NO two people are the same, and they can never be compared directly, so why worry about it? But we do. Take small advances in progress to recognizing the things you want to change for yourself and work them out one at a time.

  2. […] Daily Leadership Thought #190 – Be The Change You Want To See… (edrobinson.wordpress.com) […]

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