Categories
Accountability Change Leadership MBWA Morality Motivation positive Walking Leader Work Ethic

2024: Challenges & Opportunities

https://youtu.be/UUakqZZjI8E

As we go through life there are numerous certainties. Here are two:
One, we are constantly bombarded by challenges
Two, far too many times we fail to recognize those challenges as opportunities.

Folks, every challenge is an opportunity to grow.

Let us look at this way, opportunities do not come along as often.

However, as we are constantly being bombarded with challenges there is no escaping the opportunities that come with them.

Seriously, think about this, Day in and day out. Opportunities are all around us. There are of course, there are going to be challenges.

When it comes challenges, they are not as bountiful.

Challenges come in two flavors:

The challenges we inflict on ourselves.
and
The challenges we allow others to inflict on us.

Both types of challenges are actionable. Actionable in that we can do something about those challenges:
We can accept them and let them overtake us.
We can accept them and we can overcome them.
Or as far too many people do: Ignore them in hopes they go away but instead those challenges WILL steam roll you.

Where is the opportunity in these challenges?

Simple, opportunity is found in all three options.

The opportunity is there to make something good happen for you or to allow something bad happen to you. What you decide is solely and strictly up to you.

Another reality is that you do have control over what happens.

The harsh truth is that there are far too many people that would rather settle than to do something about their situation.

That means when they are faced with challenges, they would rather roll over, play dead, and let happen what is going to happened to them. That is WEAK!

They see the challenges but give up on overcoming those challenges and in turn they give up on themselves.

Because they gave up on themselves, they will never get to see the opportunities those challenges bring.

Giving up may seem like the easiest thing to do but when you give up it is the hardest thing you can do to yourself.

It is the hardest thing that you can do to yourself for one simple reason: The moment you give up on one thing, the easier it will be to continue giving up on other parts of your life and eventually you will give up on yourself.

Trust me on this. I know. I have given up on myself many times. However, one day an challenge popped into my life. I saw that if I decided to take it, it was going to be a huge challenge.

The challenge was accepted and the opportunity has turned out to be one of the greatest ones in my adult life.

It is truly up to you to take the challenges as they come and turn them into opportunities.

But remember, there are no opportunities when you would rather stick you head in the sand and avoid the challenges.

And if that is you? I wish you luck!

Categories
Accountability Decisionmaking Ethics Inspiration Leadership Morality Motivation positive Tips Walking Leader

2024: About Setbacks and Comebacks

While, last week I talked about Bouncing Back and Rising Strong. This week, consider it a continuation. This week I want to talk about the journey of setbacks and comebacks.

I do believe it was the great modern urban philosopher LL COOL J who once sang, “Don’t call it a comeback, I been here for years. I’m rockin’ my peers, puttin’ suckers in fear…

In the song “Mama Said Knock You Out” LL COOL J starts the song after he has gotten up and made his comeback, of sorts. But is it really a comeback he is professing? I do not think so. Not at all!

Those who called it a comeback did so because they see who he is now and never paid attention to his journey.

That is OK as they really do not care about his journey, your journey, or anyone else’s journey.

At the same time, there are people that are only around you for the good times but when the bad times roll on in, they are nowhere to be found.

That is because they are on their own journey, they are trying to figure it out.
They are trying to navigate through their life but for those individuals, that journey is usually taking them nowhere or they only go in circles.

However, always remember and never forget just as others are on their own journey, you are on one, as well.

Your journey is taking you places to see and do things you have never seen and done before.

As you are on your journey do not worry about whether others are watching you now or not.

What matters is that you are watching yourself.

Watching what you are doing for yourself now matters the most.

Others will stumble upon you in the future and see what you have done. What you have accomplished.

They will see the person you are, at this moment, and not the person that had to make things happen, make sacrifices. They were not seeing nor worrying about the scratching, scrimping, hustling, and grinding you had to do to get to where you are now.

Those that show up in the good times are not going to see the struggles, the downsides you endured to get to the place you are right now.

Those kinds of individuals are known as “fair weather friends” and if you do not know what that is look it up. The definition may surprise you then again it might be a direct reflection of you. No surprises!

All I can say about that is nothing you can do or say can change the fact that “Fair weather friends” are the WORST kind of people to have around you and in your life.

They will be around you up until the time comes when you need them or something from them. Then, just like magic, POOF, they are gone. Disappeared. No Surprise.

On the other side of that coin, I would be remiss if I did not say something about those that were with you every step of the way.

Those few individuals that saw your struggle, those that saw you rise above and those that helped you when you needed help.

Those are the only ones qualified to call it a comeback because they know.

Now let me clarify before the wrong people start getting the wrong impression.

The people that have stood by your side for the entire ride are those who ate soup and ramen with you when times were tight.

They are the people that understood and stayed home with you when others decided they could not give you the time.

They are the ones that never pulled a punched when others thought it was funny to toy with you.

They are the ones that sat next to you as you cried because you were about to complete a year without a job and you were down to your last fifty bucks in the bank.

They are the ones that helped you get back up and keep going. They are the ones that never gave up on you and made certain you did not give up on yourself.

Those are the only people that are qualified to call it a comeback because they were there when you were at your lowest and they were there when it was time to celebrate.

The ones NOT qualified are those that would rather leave you stranded in another state because no flights are flying because to them any sacrifice was way too much.

The ones NOT qualified are the ones there for the glory but not the hard work.

The ones NOT qualified are the ones that used you as an excuse when they were up to no good and would rather blame you than accept responsibility for their actions or behavior.

The ones that are NOT qualified are the ones that tell you they do not want to talk about what is bothering you because as they profess to others that is what they are there for but ultimately, they do not truly care about you.

But when spotlight shines, like moths they are sure to return to bask in your light and then once the light goes out, they are gone, again (no surprise).

Then all you hear is crickets that is until the spotlight shines again (and it will).

See your story is still being written and in that fact the ups and downs will continue to occur.

So, pick those around you carefully and wisely.

Pick those that are there to bring positivity, love, and care.

Leave out the users, abusers, wannabes, and most of all leave out those that do not truly care about you unless there is something in it for them.

Only those that are with you, every step of the way, know your comeback and just how much that comeback truly means and as the late David Bowie once sang, “the rest can go to hell.”

Categories
Accountability blog Change Ethics Inspiration Leadership Leadership Principles Mentor Motivation positive Work Ethic

Leading From The Front

When it comes to leadership in all its varying forms and style nothing and I do mean NOTHING will beat the penultimate leadership style of LEADING FROM THE FRONT.

Up until recently, there were very few real world examples of LEADING FROM THE FRONT.

The current and most relevant example is Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Yes, the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyy. In the current situation with Russia invading Ukraine, the Zelenskyy is out there fighting to push back the invaders, he is also out there fighting on behalf of his country to more international support.

The Ukrainian President is out there, on the front lines, walking his talk. How many “leaders” do that on a daily basis. How many leaders, today, are willing to walk out there where the bullets are flying.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy is the definition of Leading From The Front. He is out there fighting for his country, his constituents, his family and for his life. He is the epitome of walking his talk. He could have opted to rule from behind a desk far from the fighting. Instead, he opts to walk out to where the bullets, mortars, missiles, and tank shells are flying.

Sure there are many politicians that “claim” they lead from the front. Without shame they claim that they are out there and “no one works harder for their constituents than they do”. Yet when the opportunity to go to the front comes, they go there in a chauffeured limo. Then the moment things look like they are going sideways these politicians duck back in, speed away. Soon they find comfort in their nice cozy, comfy office chairs as far away from the front-lines as they can get.

Then there are some political officials that will flat out ignore a direct order to go to the front-lines. When questioned about why they are not going to the front-lines, their only response is a dirty look and a “cackled” laugh. Next question, please.

So much for working hard or is it working hard at avoiding any hard work? I challenge anyone to prove me wrong or try to change my mind when it comes to those politicians.

But, this post is not only about politicians. It is also about business managers, military personnel and the countless others that want to be great leaders but do not want to put in the work. They may claim they are putting in the work but yet, they are continually found behind their desk managing by email or zoom or by text (this is the worst of all). Again, I ask how can you become great if you REFUSE to get your hands dirty.

Who does not want to be known as one of the great leaders of our time? I promise you this: The person is lying if they claim they do not want to be great.

Sure, some people may be satisfied with their life if they never are seen as great. Some may be perfectly fine if they can achieve some level of greatness. No matter if a little, some or none and sure as the sun rises, everyone wants to be great.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with being great. As many have said (including myself) time and time again, to be great you have put in great work.

WORK! W-O-R-K!

There’s that nasty four-letter word. It will never go away especially when you want to do something and be something. You have to put in the work. THERE IS NO SHORTCUT TO BEING GREAT.

However, you can move the process along by getting out there and Leading from the Front and by leading from the front means you are out there ACTIVELY participating.

You are out there NOT getting in the way. You are out there not for a photo-op but to actually do something that is helping. The following is what you can do to become a great leader:
Stand Up
Step Up
Go To The Front-lines
Dig Foxholes, Fill Sandbags, Chop Wood, Carry Water
Stay Out of The Way

That is it. It does not get any clearer and better than that. Get To Work!

Thank you for your time and consideration,
David G. Guerra, MBA