One of the greatest joys of my life has been pouring into the lives of young leaders. Seeing the hunger and drive of their youth is invigorating.
And yet we see young leaders fall to the wayside far too often. Hurt, discouraged, ready to give up.
This is why we must find ways to stay encouraged. A discouraged leader does his team no good.
Today I want to offer you 15 encouragements as you take the leadership journey. Some will apply to situations you’re currently facing. Others will apply to the situations that will be coming. Tuck these pieces of encouragement away and pull them out when you need them.
15 encouragements for young leaders
You’ll never fully arrive: What? This is an encouragement? Yes, if I do say so. Remember, the end will always be elusive. There will be times of frustration because you can’t see the end. That’s because it’s not there. Don’t stress arriving, enjoy the journey.
Always be learning: I can’t stress this enough. Never stop learning. Strive to learn something new everyday. When you become a continual learner, you’ll always be in a period of growth and in a position to spring ahead.
Reach someone below you: Choose someone to mentor that’s an emerging leader. Teach them what you’ve learned. Gain new knowledge you know will benefit them. Allow them to challenge you. An amazing thing will happen. You’ll teach them, they’ll teach you.
Take time to rest: Leaders want to always be on. We often overlook the importance of rest. Don’t make this mistake. Be intentional and schedule times of rest.
You can’t make everyone happy: Regardless of how hard you try, you can’t please everyone. Don’t sweat it. Give your best and let it stand on it’s own.
Form good relationships: Every needs someone they can rely on. Find good people and form relationships with them. They’ll lift you up when you’re down, challenge you when things are good, and keep you humble when you’re experiencing success.
Create a vision: Knowing the direction you want to go will be paramount in keeping you motivated. Create a vision and keep it in mind.
Protect your health: Don’t let your body fall into disrepair. Eat right. Exercise regularly. Bathe (-; If you’re unhealthy, it’s much harder to lead. Do what you can to stay physically fit.
Be proactive: Be willing to make decisions. This is what leaders do. They see what needs to be done and they decide on a course of action. See the problem. Make the decision. Carry out the decision.
Guard yourself against temptations: You may think temptations will never come your way. Don’t be foolish. There will always be temptation in front of you. Make the choice to avoid falling into temptations trap.
Be authentic: People don’t want to follow someone who is fake. Be honest and authentic. Let your true self shine through. Your team will appreciate this.
You have great responsibility: Uncle Ben in the Spider-Man comics said this best – “With great power comes great responsibility.” Your power is the ability to influence and guide others. Use this power wisely.
Take a stand on the important issues: There will be times when you’ll be challenged on what you believe. Stand firm in what you know and don’t waiver on the important issues. You’ll lose respect if you’re constantly flip-flopping.
Enjoy your time as a leader: Leadership positions are temporary and will come and go. Enjoy your time as a leader. It may be gone before you know it.
Question: What encouragements would you share with a young leader? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.