July 15th would have been my dad’s 74th birthday. It is the first birthday since he passed away. I think about him every day, and I have been spending extra time thinking about him on this special day. He was the best leader I have ever had the privilege of following. His abilities to consistently exemplify trust, to know when to listen and when to talk, to handle conflict with empathy, and to delicately balance support and accountability made him a natural in leadership situations.
As I reflect among the long list of lessons he taught me which continue to strongly influence my actions as a parent and as a leader, in the void created by his absence I hear his voice reminding me not to lose focus on my blessings when thinking about my challenges and to continue to view the world as something I have the ability to impact, not something I am impacted by with no opportunity to control. Those reminders are both extremely relevant for people right now; while much is awry from what we previously felt was ‘normal,’ there are still blessings for which to be thankful. Do not neglect those blessings.
…While much is awry from what we previously felt was ‘normal,’ there are still blessings for which to be thankful. Do not neglect those blessings.
Where there are challenges, remember that society does not solve problems, people solve problems. Do not expect others to fix what matters most to you. We each can exert some control over the problems we face, we simply must be willing to take ownership and get involved.
The reflections are a good reminder leadership advice does not have to come from best-sellers, podcasts, and TED talks; I encourage you to be open to listening to wisdom from people you know who consistently uplift you, regardless of their title or relationship to you. While another lesson Dad would have told me was there are no free rides, I am eternally thankful for the free life-long lessons in leadership I got from him. Happy Birthday, Dad; I pray everyone has someone make a positive impact on them the way you continue to make on so many people.