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“How we lead ourselves in life impacts how we lead those around us.” ― Michael Hyatt

The first, and often most challenging, responsibility of a leader is to lead SELF.

Self-leadership definition is: Self-leadership is having a developed sense of who you are, what you can do, where you are going coupled with the ability to influence your communication, emotions and behaviours on the way to getting there.

 

Self Leadership is ‘Inside-Out’ Leadership.

Self-leaders are constantly developing: Self-awareness and Self-confidence

Self-awareness  is about knowing who God has created you to be and about being real about your strengths and weaknesses, knowing your motivations and values, as well as knowing what can ‘push your buttons’ and derail you.

To quote Thor’s Mum – EVERYONE FAILS AT WHO THEY’RE SUPPOSED TO BE, THOR. A MEASURE OF A PERSON, OF A HERO, IS HOW WELL THEY SUCCEED AT BEING WHO THEY ARE.

Self-confidence comes from knowing your strengths and abilities. As we take actions and develop skills, we become more confident.  As Christians it’s also about knowing that God is within us to empower us to serve Him.

 

“So, Jotham became mighty because he ordered his ways before the Lord his God.” — 2 Chron. 27:6 NASB

Jotham was not mighty because he had a great vision or a big army or an amazing leadership team or even an important position and title. He was mighty ‘because’ he did something. That something was to regularly lead himself into the presence of God and order his life. Everything flowed from his self-leadership discipline.

Moreover David was greatly distressed because the people spoke of stoning him, for all the people were embittered, each one because of his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God.  1 Samuel 30:6

In the face of crisis David strengthened himself in God – he led himself and his emotions and reactions – so that he could then lead the people.  Circumstancely he was in exactly the same position as all the other men.  His wives and kids were taken.  But instead of reacting, like the Israelites did, he strengthened himself in the Lord so he could make the Liam Neeson move…

“I don’t know who you are. I don’t know what you want. If you are looking for ransom I can tell you I don’t have money, but what I do have are a very particular set of skills. Skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you. If you let my daughter go now that’ll be the end of it. I will not look for you, I will not pursue you, but if you don’t, I will look for you, I will find you and I will kill you.”

—Liam Neeson, Taken

 

Self-leadership is no easy task. Life is noisy and many voices clamour for our attention and time.  Stuff happens.  We are busy.  We have a very real enemy whose sole objective is to kill steal and destroy who you are and what you are going to do for Jesus.

According to Jotham, self-leadership involves ‘ordering our ways.’ This means we think through our life and assess how we are doing. Jotham did this exercise mindful that God was with him … he was, ‘before the Lord.’ He consciously recognized God’s presence and welcomed it as he did self-leadership. He did the exercise WITH God.

 

What aspects of life should self-leadership touch?

Here are four areas to regularly consider.

MENTAL – EMOTIONAL – PHYSICAL – SPIRITUAL

 

Check your heart today by asking the following questions:

Mental:  

What issues, topics, and challenges receive most of my mental energy?

What skill do I need to learn?

What am I doing to grow wiser?

Emotional: 

Is there anything I’m feeling fear or anxiety about today?

Are my relationships healthy, life-giving, and productive?

Are there any experiences from my past that are negatively leaking into my leadership?

Physical:

Do I honour God with my exercise and nutrition?

What is my current stress level and how am I dealing with it?

Do I sleep well and do I take a day off each week rest and to honour God?

Spiritual:

Is my relationship with God honest, current, and fresh?

Is God’s Word a priority to me?

Is my worship honouring God and renewing my spirit?

 

Remember, as a leader you cannot delegate self-leadership to anyone. It is your responsibility to lead YOU.