Rick Warren, author of The Purpose Driven Life says that in life all people must decide if you want to influence people or impress them. This thought is a powerful one and really is about leadership. I define leadership as influence, and I believe that leadership is the solution to every problem in our world. If every person answered the call to leadership and chose to positively influence people rather than impress them than our world would be a much different place.
The challenge to answering the call to leadership and choosing to influence people is that often our ego can get in the way. Sure, we want to influence people, but we also want people to like us. We want people to be impressed by the awesomeness that is us. Because we want to impress people, we try to impress them and doing this makes us in-genuine.
People are rarely impressed when you try too hard to impress them. I think back to my high school and college days when I would work so hard to impress girls to get them to like me. Guess what all that work got me? Nothing! Those girls did not want to be impressed, they just wanted me to be myself. When I finally stopped trying to impress and was myself, I met the woman who is now my wife. I was amazed how much easier it was just being myself.
If you want to step up and answer the call to leadership, make a commitment today to stop trying to impress people and start positively influencing them! Remember that you already are a leader in some way. You don’t have to be President of the United States or a CEO to be a leader. You just have to be yourself and use the gifts God has given you to serve others. That is how you step up as a leader and make a difference! And guess what, people will even be impressed!