I watched Stedman Graham on an early morning news show today. You know, Oprah's Significant Other. He was talking about the passport to success and creating your identity. I found his words so true. He says, 'in order to be successful you must become a leader instead of a follower.' I have been a follower all my life. It is interesting that I had just been thinking some similar thoughts - and then Stedman comes on and makes it clear to me. My earlier thought was that I have always been re-active rather than pro-active. I wait for things to happen and then react to them rather than make things happen myself. And Stedman actually used the word proactive in the discussion. Some call this a co-incidence. I call it a God-incidence.
When I was a child I followed the other kids - whatever they decided we should do, I tagged along. I was always the very shy child who never said very much. I was the quiet one who always sat at her desk and did her work while others might be goofing off. I was always the observer, watching how kids acted because I didn't know how to act. That sounds funny, doesn't it. Maybe I should say I didn't know how to interact with other kids, being an only child and around adults most of the time. So in order to try to fit in I had to observe. Another reason I did not take on a leader role at a young age is because when I suggested something to do, the others either ignored it or didn't want to do it and chose to do what they wanted, and so I kept my mouth shut and followed. I had no confidence in myself from then on. I feel like the majority of my life has been as an observer, watching life from the outside and never really joining in. That has been changing though, I am happy to say.
Stedman says we are stuck in our daily routines. We get up in the morning and do the same things over and over again. Go to work, go home, eat supper, collapse in front of the tv and go to bed. In order to succeed we need to step out of that little box and do something different. Take a look at successful people. They step out, they color outside the lines, they dare to do something different. They don't let others dictate what they can or cannot do. They are not afraid to make mistakes, but learn from those mistakes.
Stedman also said that 'we are all equal in that we all have 24 hours in a day, but it is all in how you frame it around yourself. If you keep doing the same thing every day and getting nowhere, then it is time to change what you do.' I often think of the book entitled "If You Want to Walk on Water, You've Got to Step Out of the Boat". I am not sure I quoted that word for word, but you get the idea. I need to get my hands on a copy of that book and actually read it! Have you read it?
Over the many years I have lived since I was that child I have started to at least stick my toes in the water now and then. And I have slowly become a leader of sorts. I do lead Bible studies now, including a weekly study in my home very early on Friday mornings. That early hour is even a part of changing my routine as I do not like early mornings other than to be in bed and sleeping! I have always been a night owl so I need to sleep later. But I have found that changing my routine by getting up at 5 am every Friday, and putting a lot of time in working on the lesson and preparing to teach it, the class has been successful. And it has become my passion. We all need to find something we can be passionate about and then work in that area. Isn't that whas successful people do?
Too often we think of people being successful because they have money, a big house, big boat, 3 or more cars, a powerful position in their job - maybe the owner of a big company, or the CEO of a corporation. But there are other ways of being successful. I am successful in that I am no longer the quiet one. In fact, I think I am trying to make up for all the years I was quiet as I talk way too much now! Sometimes I have to bite my tongue in order to keep my thoughts to myself when it may not be appropriate to say when I am thinking. I need to remind myself to let others talk, and not interrupt them with my opinion. What makes me think I am the only one that is right? My first husband and his mother would always start talking while I was talking to them, which told me they were not interested in what I was saying and made me feel worthless, and I do not want to do that to other people. With that, I think it is time for me to stop talking here! It is time to get on with my day, and let you get on with yours - if you are still reading this. Have a great day!