Lead from Where You Are

I used to think that only people in “real” positions of leadership were qualified to be leaders. In fact, I believed this for many years of my adult working life.

It took two events that occurred about 10 years ago to get me to think differently about the concept of leadership.

First, we started looking at sending our girls to high school at St. Vincent’s Academy in downtown Savannah. The school’s motto is, “Educating young women who lead,” and during our orientations, we were told that at SVA, the girls learn to be leaders in their own lives.

I had never thought of myself as a leader in my own life until that moment. It was an epiphany for me to realize that I have always been in a position of leadership.

Second, I starting working towards my Master of Arts degree in Professional Communication and Leadership, and through studying leadership, I realized that you do not have to have an official leadership position to exercise leadership. You can choose to lead every single day from wherever you are in life.

If you are a parent, you are a leader of your children (so you better choose to lead wisely). If you work on a team at your job, you can choose to take on a leadership role of some sort within the team. If you are a student, you likely have friends who look to you for leadership in different areas, like studying and making friends.

We can all be leaders in our own lives. The question is—Are you willing to lead from where you are, even if it is not where you want to be?

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