John Maxwell states that "Leadership is influence." Everyone has spheres of influence, whether they embrace those opportunities or not. The choice to lead or avoid is personal. People influence through their skills, personalities, finances, confidence, networks, and other traits. People have differing motivations for their influence ranging from self-serving to selfless. They can also vary in style from assertive to passive.
Understanding oneself helps the leader more effectively influence people for the desired effect. Anticipating personal gaps and biases allows leaders to make adjustments to expand their networks and raise their capacity. In so doing, they pursue loftier goals and bring better results to those they lead. Understanding oneself also allows leaders to tailor their style to the setting. For example, someone may lead their family differently than they lead at their job because the goals and measurables are separate and dissimilar. The universal truth remains that leadership begins with YOU. It would be best if you first led yourself before you could lead your family, organization, and community.
In the spheres of influence, we see that leading oneself is foundational to the other spheres.
Personal brokenness and dysfunction limit people's ability to expand their leadership spheres, but they also contribute to the fall from grace when broken people assume places of influence, authority, and power. If you can fill in gaps, grow in your self-awareness and build your leadership competencies, you will see your influence grow beyond yourself to your family, work, and community. John Maxwell added this statement, "Leadership is not about titles, positions, or flowcharts. It is about one life influencing another." Lead yourself so you can lead those with whom you meet.
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