I don’t like to fly. I believe that if God had really wanted humans to fly a lot, he would have given us a couple of wings on our back. Occasionally, though, something calls on the other side of the country or that’s just too far away to drive.
When forced, I will fly. I fly probably 5-6 times a year. I’m not a pro flyer, but I’m no rookie either. I’ve flown my share, even though I don’t have medallion status.
Everytime I get on a plane, I dread having to sit and wait for everyone else to board (I’m impatient, so I try to be one of first to board). I also dread waiting for the crew to check seat belts and dish out the safety rules.
As much as I try to just pass the time, I undoubtedly pick up on parts of the safety demonstration each time. One of the parts that’s often the most entertaining is when the assistants put the oxygen mask on (because it just looks funny) and say, “If masks fall, place the mask over your mouth before helping those around you.” For a long time, I didn’t quite understand why it was necessary to say that until one day it hit me…
In order for me to help someone else, I have to be able to help myself.
It sounds simple, right? Simple, but true.
If we’re going to take care of others, we must also take care of ourselves.
The principle is true for young adults who find themselves leading others. In order to lead others, we must lead ourselves. In order to help others improve their lives and accomplish a vision, we must lead ourselves to live disciplined lives that can accomplish a vision.
Don’t misunderstand me. We aren’t called to be perfect. Great leaders don’t lead themselves perfectly, but they do lead themselves well.
For us to be great leaders in the future (and now), we must position ourselves to lead good lives so we can help others . For us to be great leaders, we must have the motivation and conviction to place guard rails in our lives to lead ourselves toward better things.
Lead yourself before you lead others.
Jonathan Pearson is a millennial determined to leave the world in better shape than he found it. Read more about topics like this in Jonathan’s book Next Up: 8 Shifts Great Young Leaders Make. To find out more about the book, go to nextupbook.com. To find out more about Jonathan, visit his website.