Lead Yourself Better

Answer me honestly; no judgment here: Do you ever sneak a peek at the advice columns in the newspaper? I do once in awhile. I find the questions posed are easier answered than happenings in my own, real life. For example, I read a column recently where the writer’s boyfriend had called her a “boring loser,” and the bf couldn’t take it anymore. The writer “guessed” the two were close to breaking up, but she was devastated because she thought the relationship would lead to marriage. For the sake of space, I’ll stop there. Besides, next steps are obvious, right?

***Confidential to the lady in back: The relationship might lead to marriage, just not with this dude. I don’t know you, but I know you are worth far more.***

Leading ourselves can be tricky. What’s more, knowing – I mean, knowing – the magnitude of impact great leadership has on y-o-u is astronomical. Between you and me, I’m late to the game. I was introduced to the concept of leadership and the impact of both bad and great leaders began only a few, short years ago through The Global Leadership Summit. Being aware of how I lead myself came even later. The words I type sound fishy, yes? But, Brave One, how do you lead yourself? Do you even believe yourself as a leader? A leader?

The number of people within your circle of influence isn’t what counts in January’s issue of Homegrown Journal. The leadership insights offered are intended to be used today by anyone, any title – from CEO Johnny Morris to Brad Pitt’s mom, from Joy, my neighbor; to Mrs. Maggi, my third grade teacher; or to Christie, my friend. Yet, I want to pause name-dropping to focus on the me. The you. And the importance of it all.

The mission of Homegrown has been re-focused. Yes, a life well lived is still important in 2022. Don’t waste a minute of this short, priceless life you have been entrusted with. But make it matter.

Ephesians 4:1-2 says, “Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.” To be clearer, read Ephesians 4:1-3 from The Message translation.

Lead a life worthy of your calling. As The Message version says, “I don’t want any of you sitting around on your hands. I don’t want anyone strolling off, down some path that goes nowhere.” Dear Brave Reader: What does that look like for you today?

  • Perhaps you need to begin by asking and answering some tough-love questions that will direct you to your core why, as Andrew McGowan discovered.
  • Perhaps it means you seek out a therapist, like Brandy Harris did.
  • Or maybe it looks like you becoming more present in whatever you do, as Carrie Richardson explains.
  • Maybe it would benefit you to set boundaries and choose who is in your circle, as it did Janelle Reed.
  • Or, possibly, it looks like you figuring out how to make those around you superstars, as Zach Troutman learned.

It’s also possible nothing on the list above represents what you need to be doing or where you need to be. As Brandy writes, “I just ask you to find something meaningful for you.” Don’t waste today. Lead a life worthy of your calling. We are cheering you on, Brave One.

Julie Johnson
editor in chief

p.s. In addition to our Lead Outta Love cover stories, do not miss this month’s Foster/Adopt feature from Greg and Tarynn Goddard and family.

Lisa Berg reminds her oldest granddaughter (and us) how God makes us new when we become His in “Once New, Always New.”

Mark Applegate shares with senior adults “5 Boredom Busters to Beat the Stuck-Inside-Blues.

And Jan Weiss interviewed three residents of Eden Village and has written how Home matters in “A Village Becomes Home.”

Cover photo: Courtesy of the Johnson family vault. Circa 1989. Christmas.

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