One of the most valuable lessons I am learning in my life is that I don’t need to do it alone. “It” can be defined as almost anything I do, including developing a new program for one of my clients, running my business, needing help repairing something and even walking my dog. What’s freeing about this discovery is that it saves me time and energy. I get to a better end result because of the shared ideas, and, most importantly, I get to have great fun working with others!
One of my mentors, Laura Whitworth, co-founder of The Bigger Game, always says that people are hungry to make a difference in the world; they just don’t know how. We can show them how.
I am finding this to be true. No matter where my clients are in their personal or professional lives, they come to me to reconnect with their vision. We lose sight of our vision when daily activities, routines, responsibilities and obligations take over. We can no longer see what drives us. We begin to feel we have no choice and are being driven instead of driving.
The one important thing about having a vision is to take action to make your vision a reality. The first major step in doing this is to talk about your vision, enroll and engage others in it. By doing this, you become more committed to your vision. There is power in speaking about your vision because you’ll gain clarity and get closer to making it a reality. How scary is that? And how exhilarating?
As leaders, it is our responsibility to show others the “how.” In speaking about your vision, you will find others who will think you’re crazy and others who will think you’re not. So what? Those who think you may be crazy will help you become more convicted in your vision and those who think you’re not will become great allies.
I am participating in a leadership book club and our current book is “The Art of Possibility” by Benjamin Zander and Rosamund Stone Zander. Our current practice from the book is called “Being a Contribution.” The practice involves inventing oneself as a “contribution,” and others as well. Replace the fearful question, “Am I loved for who I am, or for what I have accomplished?” with the joyful question, “How will I be a contribution today?”
Take two simple steps to answer this question:
- Declare yourself to be a contribution.
- Throw yourself into life as someone who makes a difference, accepting that you may not understand how or why.
Watch what happens. Enroll and engage by example. Remember, you may be the “how” to someone who has a vision and just doesn’t know how to make it real. Don’t be the one to cheat others out of the opportunity to make their visions a reality. Step into leading and enroll others in your vision. Don’t wait. Model leadership. The world needs us to do this.