It’s Easy to Get Comfortable
I’m not old.
Neither am I young.
In this stage of life, I want to be both. I want the maturity and wisdom of age and experience, but I want to cling to the energy and idealism of youth. I want to believe my ideas are still new and innovative. Perhaps the greatest danger of this season is in both believing I still have great ideas but also the wisdom of experience.
Enough to Be Dangerous
It’s not impossible to have both great ideas and the wisdom of experience. It’s just dangerous to assume you have both because of this stage of life. It’s an attitude that leads to the entanglement of pride.
This is the “I know enough to be dangerous” stage of leadership. I’ve circled the leadership block enough times for the scenery to be familiar. I know the twists and turns of the road, and I know where to anticipate the potholes. I’m confident to direct others who join me.
Expand Your Territory
But at this stage of life and leadership, it’s time for my territory to expand. Perhaps I haven’t been paying attention to the new construction, and it’s changing traffic patterns. Are there new roadways that connect to my block and I haven’t explored them?
Before I exhaust the metaphor completely…
What I’m learning about this season of leadership is that it’s easy to get comfortable with where we grew up as leaders. After all, we have ideas, systems, and decision-making filters that are common and comfortable.
If we choose to stay with this set of experiences, we will limit ourselves. We will be inclined to reject new or different ideas. We will pridefully rely on what we know. Since it worked for us in the past, we’re convinced it will work in the future.
The danger is that the landscape is changing whether you’re exploring it or not. We must listen to new voices. Challenge ourselves to consider new ideas. Yes, it’s uncomfortable. It will stretch us. And it will even batter your confidence.
But our ability to continue to grow as leaders is contingent on our ability to keep ourselves slightly uncomfortable. It’s in the discomfort where we continue to learn and grow. Remain uncomfortable and become a great leader.
Are you in an uncomfortable season of leadership? What are you learning from it?
Keep leading well.
Jenni Catron and The 4Sight Group
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As leaders, we’re full of ideas and initiatives. We see potential and opportunity all around. We can almost taste the outcome, but often we get bogged down by how we’ll get from here to there.
The “how” can be overwhelming and discouraging, so we give up on our goals or fail to build a plan to help us achieve them.
These five steps will get you and your team on the path to moving from ideas to action! We’d love to have you join our community and access this free PDF!
Jenni Catron is a writer, speaker, and leadership coach who consults churches and non-profits to help them lead from their extraordinary best. She speaks at conferences and churches nationwide, seeking to help others develop their leadership gifts and lead confidently. As Founder and CEO of The 4Sight Group, she consults with individuals and teams on leadership and organizational health.
Jenni is the author of several books, including Clout: Discover and Unleash Your God-Given Influence and The 4 Dimensions of Extraordinary Leadership.