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Do you ever wonder if God really hears you?
Is He paying attention to your life among the millions?
Does He know your burdens, your hopes, your heart?
Sometimes, I wonder.
Usually, the wonder comes when I’m in need. When I’m searching for answers, or even a hint to clues of answers.
Sometimes He answers in the way I ask. Sometimes He answers another, better way.
And sometimes He surprises me when I’m not even wondering or mindful at all...
I didn't get in school trouble much, but if I did it was likely for daydreaming. Who doesn't love to dream about the future? If you're called to be a difference-maker, you've got a dream. Maybe your dream is yet to be defined, likely it hides in the busyness of life only to peek out from time-to-time, or possibly it gnaws at you daily, nagging, even begging you to give it life. Or, just maybe, you've tried. You're trying.
Before we delve into the very real problem of friend famine in leadership, let’s tackle the elephant in the room first. If you are a leader, or a woman, or, well, human, then you have probably been hurt by a friend. You’ve learned what disloyalty, mistrust, betrayal, or abandonment is through tough, tearful experiences. “Ugh! Why would you bring that to memory!” you may think. Simply, because we must acknowledge the fatality of friendship before we really understand the vitality of it.
Friendships fail because we are imperfect people. The pain of unrealized expectations and lost relationships goes deep, but pain is a good teacher if we are willing to learn from....
Just as Esther was unsure of her purpose and calling, many leaders wonder if they have chosen the right path. In the reality of product demand, customer relations, marketing campaigns, and over-extended workdays, we must seek to understand the reason for our being in this place at this time. God has a purpose and a plan in every situation. A leader’s influence does make a difference; sometimes we just need someone like great Uncle Mordecai to remind us what an impact we really do make.
Even on our most difficult day, we probably aren’t faced with a life or death situation like Esther was when she had to confront the King. However, leaders can learn much from Esther as she....
I love opening my email inbox! Each message is like a little treasure in an unopened box. But, honestly, I haven’t always felt that way. Currently I maintain five, yes, five email accounts. Because of my involvement with a couple of organizations, my personal account for family, and my business accounts, they just add up. I could easily be overwhelmed (and have been) with all of the messages without a system. But I created a time-saving, frustration-easing, freedom-giving system that I love to use!
When I first started working, most people were not very tech savvy with email systems, so I remember the old-school inboxes stacked high with papers (for everyone under 30, this is...
Many times you as the leader can see the promise in someone before they realize their own potential, and often before they are ready to invest in themselves through mentoring. And, let’s be honest, sometimes we face resistance to mentoring even when it is much needed.
When I began my career as an educator, I was blessed with a great mentor who wasn’t very secretive about it. It was a formal relationship, which was part of her job as an administrator, but she took the time to mentor me ‘beyond the list’ of teacher attributes required of her. She taught me how to be a team-player, how to lead a committee meeting, how to properly set a buffet, when to confront...
Leadership, Personal Growth, Purpose
Staying focused on our personal priorities during busy seasons is one of the most common challenges for us as women in leadership. It is so easy to get swept up in the hype of comparison or hustle of climbing the ladder, no matter which wall it's leaning against.
One of the best ways I stay focused on what is most important to me in my personal definition of success is to nurture my mind and soul with good books. I listen to a book every week or two, and these three books have helped me get back on track with the road was getting blurry (or this traveler was just getting weary!)
1. Grace Over Grind by Shae Bynes
The purpose of Grace Over Grind is to challenge you,...
When you are passionate about your work and equally enamored with your personal life, you can sometimes feel them tugging with one another over your attention. As leaders, most of us struggle to keep our heads above water during busy seasons…and honestly, sometimes we even allow those seasons to become lifestyles. It is easier to get out of balance when we love our work, than it is to leave the work undone. Equally, there are times when we just want, or need, to spend an unusual amount of time with a friend in need, our new baby, or ill relative. Life demands our attention, and our hearts pull us in many directions that can leave us feeling out off kilter. If you recognize any of....
Leadership, Personal Growth, Purpose
As leaders, we are always on a journey of mastering our own thoughts, feelings, and behaviors so that we can succeed and serve others well. No matter what level of success we achieve as a leader, self-leadership is vital to leading others well.
When you leverage your behaviors you can use your knowledge, resources, and habits, so that you are better able to serve others through leadership....
Leadership, Personal Growth
Effective leadership is intentional. Great leaders spend time in both effective leadership planning and practice. Some great things to consider as you plan your successful leadership are:
Establish Non-negotiable Principles
“If you would have a happy life, remember two things: In matters of principle, stand like a rock; in matters of taste, swim with the current,” Thomas Jefferson. If you haven’t yet established your set of core values, start there.
Be flexible with the things that are negotiable. “You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist,” Indira Gandhi. So, seek to be a plow rather than a bulldozer. The plow cultivates the soil, making it a good...
Faith Lifestyle Purpose
The greatest asset that I have found in long-game leadership is divine direction from God. No leader knows all, so there is an imperative need for a greater source of knowledge, wisdom, courage, and compassion that we must tap into as leaders. Inasmuch, there is no greater liability to a leader than being unable to discern God’s guidance when it is needed.
Like many entrepreneurial leaders, I can be a bit of a loner at times. Although I love spending time with family and friends, solitude is what I need to recalibrate my energy and focus. Sometimes I get too involved in life and leadership and slip into the bad habit of neglecting what I need most to thrive. When I do, it always...
Leadership Personal Growth
Recently, one of my clients took a new position with a new company and found herself leading a team. Finding that she had inherited a whole package of problems that had not been resolved by the previously leader, she asked me for some suggestions on leadership and business resources. I jumped at the chance to help her overcome the obstacles I knew she was about to face in navigating change with her new team. I’ve been there, and I know that when you’re leading a new team through change, you need quick wins. When you need consistent, quick, implementable resources, podcasts are the way to go!
Over the last two years I’ve become a podcast junkie, so dwindling down my list...
You can achieve that goal!
If you’re like me, you’re enjoying the hustle and bustle of success. I want to fully enjoy the season…and I need more time to complete some big goals on my list for this year! I’m reminding myself of a few important tips to getting those important things done before the new quarter rolls around – I’d bet you can benefit from them too!
Celebrate what you’ve already accomplished.
I’ll admit that sometimes I am so focused on getting the next thing started that I forget to slow down and appreciate what I finished. Join me in looking back at last quarter's goals and reflecting on all the...
In fact, I’m sure I’ve never said it either. As leaders we feel passionately obligated to work or serve in our calling, and we hope our families and friends will understand, accept, even share our enthusiasm for it. Whether we overwork out of a sense of obligation or fulfillment doesn’t matter to those who miss us. They both create a void when we are absent, and frankly, they can both cause us regret and guilt when we are absent from those whom we most cherish.
As leaders, most of us struggle to keep our heads above water...