*This post is part of a teaching curriculum based on John Maxwell’s leadership devotional book entitled A Leader’s Heart.
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Read: Don’t Take Yourself Too Seriously (Page 5)
Proverbs 17:22 A merry heart doeth good like a medicine…
As leaders, if we are not careful, we can run the risk of letting our title and position become too much of our identity; who we think we are, and thereby start becoming too serious about what we are doing.
You’ll know this is happening to you when you start to become so serious about your work that you cannot enjoy it. It is at this point that we need to reevaluate where our identity and value really come from.
I have found that many leaders become overly-serious about that which they are leading or doing when they start putting too much emphasis on how their work makes them look to others; what others are thinking about them, how they compare to others in the same industry or field, etc.
When we find this starting to dominate our thinking, it’s time to step back and remember the things that really are important. It’s time to put our work in its rightful place, which usually is not at the top of our priority list as we may sometimes allow it to be.
This is very difficult to do for most leaders because they are so busy keeping things moving, coming up with new ideas, charting new pathways, and blazing new trails. But, it is very necessary if we are to have healthy success.
This in no way means we should let these things slip, but we should simply readjust their placement a bit and not be so serious that it becomes a detriment rather than a blessing to us.
Let’s always remember to be human first. This includes all the experiences and expressions that come with being human.
Taking ourselves too seriously has negative effects, not only on us, but on those around us as well. Giving yourself a break may just be the break that those around you need in their lives too.
Assignment: Discuss (comment below) when you came to the conclusion that you were taking your work and/or yourself too seriously. What was it that finally brought you to that place? What did you do to correct the situation?
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