As a leader, people and circumstances will occasionally break you down. But if you keep your mind focused, your heart open to possibility, and continue to put one foot in front of the other, you will be able to quickly recover the pieces, rebuild, and come back much stronger than you ever would have been otherwise.
Here are a few leadership thoughts to ponder on those days when the whole world seems like it’s crashing down around you.
- Down days are completely normal, and not something you should feel guilty about having.
Happiness is never constant. Surrendering to your sadness, or whatever negative emotion is trying to come to the surface, does not make you a bad person. But remember, if you aren’t sincerely thankful for every smile, don’t be totally shocked by every tear. Keep things in perspective.
- When you are at your lowest point, you are open to the greatest positive change.
Happiness is not the absence of problems, but the strength to deal with them. Strength doesn’t come from what you can do; it comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t do
- There is a huge difference between giving up and moving on.
Moving on doesn’t mean giving up, but rather accepting that there are some things that cannot be. Moving on can mean that you’re making a choice to be happy rather than hurt. For some folks, good situations last a lifetime, but for many, not knowing when to move on can hold them back forever.
- Life rarely turns out exactly the way you want it to, but you still have an opportunity to make it great.
You have to do what you can, with what you have, exactly where you are. It won’t always be easy, but it will be worth it in the end. Remember that there is no perfect life, just perfect moments. And it’s these moments you must cherish; it’s these moments that make the whole journey worthwhile.
- Most people ask for happiness on condition, but long-term happiness can only be felt if you don’t set conditions.
Accept life unconditionally. Realise that life balances itself between the ideal and the disappointing. And the disappointments are just life’s way of saying, “I’ve got something better for you right around the corner.” So be patient, live life, accept what is, and have a little faith.
- Too often, we carry around things from our past that hurt us
Regrets, shame, anger, pain, etc. Don’t let these negative points from the past rob your present happiness. You had to live though these things in the past, and al- though unfortunate, they can’t be changed. But if the only place they live today is in your mind, then let go, move on, and be happy.
- Once you embrace unpleasant news not as a negative but as evidence of a need for positive change, you’re learning from it and growing.
Whatever life throws at you, even if it hurts, be strong and get through it. Remember, strong walls shake but never collapse. Life always offers you another chance – it’s called tomorrow.
- When your flaws are stitched together with good intentions, your flaws make you beautiful.
It’s better to be true to yourself and risk being ridiculed by others, than to be false, and miss out on the beauty of being YOU. Never be bullied into silence. Never let someone else tell you who you are. Accept no one’s definition of your life, except your own.
- You can choose to view things differently.
Pick one part of your life that you are unhappy with and look at it from a different point of view. See the rain as nourishment for future growth. Consider being alone for a while to create the solitude you need to hear your inner voice. Think of your lack of funds as an opportunity to experience the simple things in life. Right now, you can choose to allow the light to shine in your life. It is a choice. Why not allow it?
- You have the ability to heal yourself.
Just like lava oozing slowly out of a volcano, you must create a healthy outlet for your pain and anger. It’s important after you’ve been hurt to take some time to think about your pain, and address it calmly and consciously, so you can thwart the possibility of more pain brewing from your own negativity.
- There’s a lot of life left to be lived.
The real tragedy in life is not death, but the passion we let die inside of us while we still live. Remember, troubles from the past cannot define, defeat or destroy you all by themselves. As long as you keep pushing forward, they can only strengthen you.
- You are a work in progress – which means you get there a little at a time, not all at once.
Today is a brand new day – a fresh start. Replace negativity with positivity. Think happy thoughts. Exercise. Drink lots of water. Fill your body with fuel. Healthy is happy. Inspire yourself. Create. Laugh. Play. Love. Learn. Give someone a compliment. Perform a random act of kindness. Take a chance on an idea you believe in. You have the opportunity to do these things every single day – to make the necessary changes and slowly become the person you want to be. You just have to decide to do it. Decide that today is the day. Say it: “This is going to be my day!”
Lere Baale is a Certified Strategy Consultant at Howes Consulting Group www.howesgroup.com and a Director of Business School Netherlands www.bsn.eu .