Monday, October 5, 2009

Extraordinary Leadership

I have been intensely studying what makes people with extraordinary leadership quality and ability tick for much of my life. And through this pursuit to unravel and dissect the art of personal greatness, I have read countless books and listened to countless audiotape programs as well. I have a passion for studying about Extraordinary Leadership. I am truly inspired by boldness, greatness, and honorable, noble character wherever I come across it. I believe we are all inspired by those who demonstrate extraordinary qualities of the human spirit. It is hard not to look up to and admire someone of remarkable caliber, just like it is impossible to stand beneath a 300 foot redwood tree, or next to a towering mountain, or the ocean, and not admire their beauty, strength, presence and power.

Some of the key role models who have undoubtedly influenced my life in a remarkably, positive way and whom I feel have demonstrated, or who currently demonstrate Extraordinary Leadership are: John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr., Gandhi, Vince Lombardi, Nelson Mandela, Zig Ziglar, Anthony Robbins and Oprah Winfrey. Through studying these remarkable souls lives, beliefs and teachings, I have come across a lot of similar core traits they all seem to possess and demonstrate. I believe all of these great leaders and all other extraordinary leaders for that matter, possess these core traits and habits, which we can all model and incorporate. I will call them:

11 Traits for Personal Greatness and Extraordinary Leadership

1) Personal Responsibility and Self Discipline

-Taking responsibility for yourself in all areas (mind,body, spirit), being assertive, taking charge for what is in your realm to accomplish and being disciplined in thoughts, actions and beliefs

2) Inner Motivation

-Finding within yourself the will to achieve, to stay positive, the strength and desire to keep improving, to keep challenging yourself to grow and become better day by day

3) A Vision For Life

-Having a vision for where you're going and holding to that vision even when it is stormy outside, or when others may be trying to discourage you, or put out your fire

4) Service Mentality

-Understanding that being service minded is a key value, a strong asset to any team, corporation, or organization and truly giving of yourself and your talents whenever possible

5) Passion and Love for What You are Doing

-Following your bliss, exercising your authentic gifts and passions, radiating joy in your work and your dharma, spreading a little sunshine from your soul

6) Respect and Compassion for others

-Giving recognition and praise where it is due, truly operating for the good of all, understanding the interconnected web of all existence, the value of all life, and coming from a place of love in all you say and do

7) Priority Driven Mentality

-Ability to stay in focus, see the job or task through to completion, taking care of first things first, ability to start and finish tasks begun in a timely manner

8) Commitment to Excellence

-Constantly improving yourself and holding yourself and others around you to a higher standard (more of an attitude than anything), maintaining absolute commitment and dedication to self mastery and life mastery

9) Trustworthiness and Integrity

-Always being dependable, demonstrating predictable behavior, promoting trust to peers, family and friends, and demonstrating true character in EVERY possible situation

10) Action Oriented With an Assertive Will

-Getting the job done, taking responsibility for creating the life you want to create and experience, exercising total self confidence and self belief, and not being afraid to walk your own path, or blaze your own trail

11) Optimistic and Have a Winners Mentality

-Keeping yourself in resourceful states at all times, always finding a way to stand out, excel in any crowd, in any group, ability to stay positive through any situation, and practicing positive mind conditioning

Vince Lombardi once said, "Leaders are made, they are not born. They are made by hard effort, which is the price which all of us must pay to achieve any goal that is worthwhile." Leadership is not just about ability, but always taking responsibility, always exceeding others expectations and coming from a true place of service, always looking for ways to give more of yourself. A true leader doesn't glory in making followers out of others, he or she glories in making leaders out of everyone around them. That is the true mark of greatness. Aristotle said, " Excellence is not an act, but a habit." Our habits either make or break our lives. Great habits can and will establish great character. Exemplifying all of the 11 Traits for Personal Greatness and Extraordinary Leadership, you are sure to be well on your way up toward Extraordinary Leadership.

Copyright Justin Topik 2009

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