Are You Where You Want To Be?

Building and strengthening your character cannot be done at home by yourself, it cannot be done in a classroom. You need to be out there experiencing the tough times in leadership. Only then will you know exactly where you want to be. Only then will your desire burn to work on getting where you want to be.

How far do you want to climb the leadership ladder? How many people do you want to help climb the leadership ladder? The reason I ask those questions is, because I want you to realise that to do both, you will need to make some sacrifices. You will need to make sacrifices if you want to get to where you want to be.

You will also need to make some sacrifices in order for you to help others get to where they want to be.

1. How Much Are You Willing To Sacrifice?

When deciding on what you are willing to sacrifice, you need to know exactly where you want to get to. That all starts by looking within yourself. You want to be moving forward, not backward. So, you must sacrifice what is required to move forward.

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If you don’t, then there will be someone else who is willing to make those sacrifices, and they will get ahead of you. If you lose the appetite for personal growth, then you will be bypassed, and left behind. When you are finished with making your sacrifices, then you can no longer climb the leadership ladder.

When we move forward, it does not happen by accident, or just naturally happen. It happens because we are deliberately taking the right actions, and making the right sacrifices to move forward. If you want to gain something, then you must give up something.

If you want to get a promotion or a better job, then you will have to sacrifice your time to learn about the new role. Or, you will have to sacrifice your time to earn a qualification.

When you have finished sacrificing your time learning about the new job, and then interviewing for the job, you now have to make more sacrifices to stay in the job. The skills you used to get the job will not be the same skills required to do the job.

So, you will have to sacrifice more of your time to learn on the job, and to learn off the job. Then, if you want to climb the leadership ladder even further, you will have to make the same sacrifices with your time again. All these sacrifices are required if you want to get to where you want to be.

If you want to become a leader and fill a leadership position, then you will need to learn leadership skills. So, to learn those skills you will need to sacrifice your time to do that. In most leadership positions in any industry, it is required that you have a degree. If you do not have that degree, then the same sacrifice will need to be made.

When you are looking within yourself, and deciding on your sacrifices, remember that to make the right decisions you need to have discipline. You need to have a desire, and a vision for a brighter future. Making a sacrifice is giving something up that is valuable to you today, so you can strive towards your vision, and desire tomorrow.

2. What Is Your Vision?

You cannot hope for a brighter future. You must know where you want to go, and what your vision is. If you are “hopeful”, you can start to visualise what you want. You will be able to imagine what it would be like if your vision was a reality. The more you imagine, and the more you visualise your future, your desire to make it real will grow.

As your desire continues to grow, the easier it will become to plan how to make your vision a reality. With desire you will want to work on your vision every day, and you won’t want to give up. When starting to develop your plan, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Why have I imagined this vision, and future for myself?
  • How will I get to where I want to be?
  • When will I get to where I want to be?
  • Who can I ask to help me get to where I want to be?

These principles you are learning are designed to help you in all aspects of your life, whether that be at work, or at home. However, my purpose is to help you grow as a leader, and to help you develop your people into leaders. But, before you can help your team and others grow, you must first begin with yourself.

3. How are YOU going to GROW?

You need to grow yourself into a position where you are ready to develop others.

Focus on developing yourself into a more valuable leader and person. Hopefully, you now have a really good understanding of why you need to work on yourself every day. Hopefully, you have a good understanding of why you need to grow, and develop.

So, now it is up to you to ask yourself, “How do I work on myself every day to grow and develop into a highly effective leader?” Discipline is the habit you need to develop, in order for you to work on yourself every day. Have the discipline to focus on becoming the best leader, and the most valuable person you can be.

If you study the most successful leaders and people in the world, you will find a common thread between them all. They are also the most valuable leaders and people in the world.

When thinking of how you become more valuable, make a decision on what will make you more valuable first. Then you can work on yourself, to become valuable in the area of your choice. As you improve in this area, people will start to value you for it.

It is not very difficult to decide what area you would like to become most valuable in, and how you work on yourself. The most difficult part of it is keeping the discipline to work on yourself every day. Most people struggle with keeping this discipline, because it takes a lot of self-motivation, and sacrifice.

It is one thing knowing what to do, but it is another thing doing what it takes to make yourself more valuable in the area of your choice.

4. Do You Have The Discipline?

Now you have nearly finished this post and have read through my other posts, you have a lot more knowledge than you did before you started reading. But, you now need the discipline to apply what you have learned every day.

When thinking of sacrifices to make in order for you to get to where you want to be, they must be things that would normally get in the way. For me, it was wasting time doing nothing, watching TV. It was hanging with friends who weren’t doing anything.

It was drinking alcohol and having a hangover the next day. It was playing golf, or going to the cinema. I gave up all of these things so I could focus, and have the discipline to get to where I wanted to be. You may have different sacrifices, but you must go through the same process.

To strive towards reaching your potential then you must go the extra mile. Don’t just do what is expected from your boss, or any other influences in your life. To grow and develop as a leader, and become more valuable, then you must be deliberate.

You must deliberately decide to grow and develop yourself in any way you can, and whenever you can. To achieve your dream, you must focus on yourself. To help others achieve their dream, you must focus on them. Highly effective leaders are able to do both. Are you willing to work on yourself so you can do both?

Before you started reading through my site, had you read through any other leadership sites or books? Did you grow and develop yourself to become a better leader, and more valuable every day? If you cannot lead yourself, then you will never lead others. Leadership is not about you, but it starts with you.

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How do you spend your time? Do you waste it or invest it? You spend a lot of time at work, and the work you do there is important. However, the work you do when you’re not at work is even more important.

If you invest your time in developing yourself, you will get ahead. If you don’t, then you will stay exactly where you are. Or, even worse, you will move backwards. What would you rather do?

The decision is yours. Make the decision based on what you are willing to sacrifice. Then make the decision of when you are going to TAKE ACTION and make those SACRIFICES.

Are you willing to put other people’s wants and needs before your own?

I welcome hearing how this post has influenced the way you think, the way you lead, or the results you have achieved because of what you’ve learned in it. Please feel free to share your thoughts with me by commenting below.

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All the best,

Tom (Lead, Grow, Influence)

22 thoughts on “Are You Where You Want To Be?

  1. I am very motivated and impressed by your article on are you where you want to be, and over the years I have found that when putting others first has actually provided me more success. This article is a great guide to getting where you want to be in your life, so I recommend you bookmark and share with your family and friends

    Jeff

    1. Hi Jeff,

      Thanks for returning and engaging. Really pleased to have you here.

      Putting others first has also helped me achieve a lot more than I ever thought. Especially when I started leading my own teams.

      Keep returning and keep engaging as ever.

      All the best,

      Tom

  2. Hi Tom, I would not say it is a sacrifice to focus on what you want to achieve. Since we have limited time, you are right, we need to make the right decisions. We need to be aware of what we want to achieve. This principle is valid both for becoming a high performer, either as a leader, as an entrepreneur or as a technician. But more important than making plans, is to take action, step by step. Thanks a lot for sharing your view. Best regards, Jabu

    1. Hi Jabu,

      Thank you for your comment. Really pleased you found it valuable.

      Focussing on what you want to achieve is not the sacrifice. It’s our time that we sacrifice to plan what we need to do to get to where we want to be. Then when we do take action, we must remain on the right path.

      Keep returning and keep engaging.

      All the best,

      Tom

  3. Hi Tom,

    This is great information for climbing your way to the top and for taking the time to develop your leadership skills to get there.

    For a lot of people, it will be the fear of doing the necessary tasks and the fear of people rejecting them.

    Have you found a way to motivate people to obtain these skills?

    Thanks for the post.

    Bob

    1. Hi Bob,

      Thank you for your comment. Really pleased you found it valuable.

      What skills are you talking about? Do you mean the sill to overcome fear? You cannot motivate a person to overcome a fear, it takes courage to overcome fear.

      When I have helped people to be more courageous, the biggest thing I can do is listen to them, and then provide recommendations for them that they can try out. But being courageous and overcoming fear is not something that will happen overnight, so it takes small steps.

      You cannot force a person to try things to overcome a fear, but you can provide guidance.

      Hope this helps.

      Tom

  4. Wow! great stuff, you really sound like a true leader. I love your article. I also believe that it’s only YOU who can make a difference in your life, Nobody else. It all starts with you. Nobody will make you a leader? NO Only you through your hard work.

    Wishing you all the best for your future.

    1. Hi Edith,

      Thank you for your comment. Really pleased you found it helpful.

      It is only YOU who can make the real difference in your life. But, you will need the help of others to strive towards achieving the vision you have for your life. So, don’t be stubborn and try to do everything yourself.

      Keep returning and keep engaging.

      All the best,

      Tom

    1. Hi Andrea,

      Thank you for your kind words. Really pleased that you found the article valuable.

      Keep returning and keep engaging. If you need any help or advice on any part of your personal growth or leadership then do not hesitate to contact me.

      All the best,

      Tom

  5. Tom,
    Thanks for your sharing here! It’s a well-written article!
    I always ask myself these 2 questions.
    How will I get to where I want to be?
    When will I get to where I want to be?

    Sometimes I question myself and become confused. I havent read any books about leadership skills. I think I will take a look at them later. What books do you recommend? But I do invest time to upgrade myself.

    1. Hi ty,

      Thank you for your comment. So pleased you found the article helpful.

      Keep asking yourself those questions every day, and make sure you answer them honestly. The more you ask yourself the more they will become habits.

      The best Leadership books I have read are: 5 Levels of Leadership, 21 irrefutable laws of leadership (both by John Maxwell).

      Simon Sinek has some amazing books: Start with Why and Leaders Eat Last.

      Try those out for a starter, and then do your own research and decide on what you want to learn first.

      I post every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday so keep returning and learning from me.

      All the best,

      Tom

  6. Great article, Tom!

    I totally agree that in order for us to learn new things or even become a good leader, we must be willing to get out of our comfort zone and sacrifice our time and work extremely hard.

    Keep up the great work!

    Jonath

    1. Hi Jonath,

      Thank you for your comment. So pleased you found the article valuable.

      Getting out of our comfort zone is so important. If we don’t get comfortable with being uncomfortable then we will remain where we are. We can only grow when we make a change, even if that change is uncomfortable for us.

      Keep returning and check out my other articles. Keep engaging and if you need any help in your personal growth or leadership then please let me know.

      All the best,

      Tom

  7. Hi,

    Great article and so true!

    I learned the hard way that improvement takes time, and as you say, sacrifice.

    I like your point about wasting time. I often thought I couldn’t improve my life because I didn’t have the time. Then I added up how much time I spent browsing online!

    Improvement is not a free lunch, its hard work but it feels so good when you see that your life is getting better, and it’s because of what your doing for yourself.

    1. Hi Judy,

      Thank you for your comment. Really pleased you found it valuable.

      Wasting time is something that I used to do a lot, and when I learned to stop wasting time and take a bit more control of my life, I couldn’t believe the difference it made. Improvement is hard work as you say, but it is most definitely worth it.

      Keep up working and improving yourself every day.

      All the best and keep engaging,

      Tom

  8. Tom, thanks for writing and sharing this post. I really love this idea of constantly growing in my leadership and becoming the best version of myself. It is a constant battle I fight everyday to motivate myself to take those actions forward. Have you ever heard of the book “A Leader’s Heart” by John Maxwell? I use this book as a template everyday!

    Also, one of the biggest areas of struggle for me is the sacrifice piece. I have been down that path of being willing to sacrifice things, but then I find myself doing things I do not like. Then when I start to ween off the progress forward I feel like I am not utilizing my time the best! It’s a constant viscous cycle. Any recommendations for this?

    Thanks again for sharing!

    1. Hi Vince,

      Thank you for your comment, and thank you for your questions.

      I love John Maxwell. I have not read “A Leader’s Heart” but I do have 4 other books by John Maxwell. He’s one of the best.

      What I do to utilise my time is plan my day, my week and my month. Think about what you want to achieve every day that will enable you to take another step towards your vision. What is your vision? Write it down and work out each day what you can do to strive towards achieving your vision.

      Start by planning, and taking action. If you need any help with this then please let me know.

      All the best,

      Tom

  9. Hello,

    Your post was very well written and really made me stop and think.
    I like to think that in my life I would say I am a leader, but while I am reading your post, it made me stop and think.

    Trying to lead other people is absolutely impossible if you aren’t there personally, just like what you said. Leading yourself first is the key to answer.

    Great job
    Coralie

    1. Hi Coralie,

      Thank you for your comment. Really pleased you found the post valuable.

      Leadership is not about you, but it does start with you. Keep working on yourself each day, and keep striving towards achieving your vision.

      I would love to hear from you again and if you need any help with your leadership or personal growth then don’t hesitate to contact me.

      All the best,

      Tom

  10. The other way of looking at sacrifice (to learn, to research or to work on yourself) is to say that it is an investment. Whenever I have spent money on personal or professional growth people have often questioned the expense but I like to look at it as an investment – and it really is. I find the best leaders are those that build others up, have healthy self-esteem and so then aren’t threatened by others and thus can hand over the reins to another, encourage and acknowledge and praise the work done by another. Your’re right – it all begins with the individual.

    1. Hi Martine,

      Thank you for your comment. Really pleased you found the article helpful.

      Don’t forget, your time is more of an investment than money. Your time is the biggest sacrifice we can all make.

      Keep investing, and keep working on yourself every day.

      All the best,

      Tom

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