Stop living a lie!
Are you still sacrificing the things that matter most on the altar of urgency?
Do you say, “Things will be different tomorrow?”
I have friends that are sacrificing their spouse, children, friends, and health while they repeat the lie, “things will be different tomorrow.” They seem to believe the illusion that things magically change.
Today is yesterday’s tomorrow. Are things different? Or? Is it more of the same?
Things don’t change.
If you’re living the lie, things aren’t the problem, you are.
Things won’t change until you change.
If you’re habitually burning others up and burning yourself out, repeat after me. “I say I value my family, but I don’t.” “I say my health is important, but it isn’t.”
You can’t wait to build your future. You already built it yesterday.
Yesterday you honored things by giving them your attention and energy. The things you honored yesterday define you today. Ultimately, the things that define you control you. For example, when career defines you it controls you.
A dear friend said, “I see what you’re saying Dan but I can’t seem to break the pattern.”
It’s true, shifting from sleep-walking to wide-awake-living is like facing the glare of florescent lights after a long night in darkness. It hurts.
Stop lying start truthing
Begin truthing by thoughtfully uncovering, intentionally embracing, and gradually integrating your personal values.
First, uncover neglected values by exploring your frustrations. Are you frustrated that you aren’t building relationships? Bingo – a neglected value!
Second, tell a friend you’ve re-embraced a neglected value that shriveled and died in the darkness of daily stress. Perhaps it’s time to find an accountability partner?
Lastly, begin rejecting the values others impose on you by gradually and gently making life-choices based on your personal values.
How can leaders successfully implement personal change?
If you enjoyed this post you might enjoy, “QBQ! The Question Behind the Question.” What I learned from QBQ?
I was speaking with one of the FSU Film students yesterday about a casting situation (he is looking for a German-speaking man, which results in a somewhat small pool here in Tallahassee). In the midst of the discussion, he made the following statement: You can tell when the actor doesn’t believe.
I think that statement about believing is true in life as well as acting. If the leader is not living what he or she believes, the project may get done, the money may be raised, the production quota may be met. But when he/she looks into the mirror, if the leader has sacrificed personal accountability for a result or trod over people on the way, there is probably some more personal change in order.
Happy New Year, LF community.
Leaders can successfully implement personal change by breaking internal inertia and external imposed perception. When we try to justify our actions to impress others rather than to analyse the values of that action, then we create externally imposed perception. Value does not need verification, justification or appreciation from other source. Value is pure in its form. Like truth, value in internal state of mind. I agree to your point that when people lie, they compromise many things in life but the funny thing is that they do not realise it. They blame it to other circumstances but they never look inside what they really do.
Why do people lie? My belief is that people lie usually to cover their inefficiencies, incompetencies and try to show others that they are superior. It is the strategic tool to hide their weaknesses. But they do not scan the viral impact of their behaviour on their generatin to come. As a good human beings, one has to think what one is going to give to his children, family and society when he has left this world. But, unfortuantely, people focus less on this question. Bad things ususally apply to others and good things apply to us.
The person who lies, can not live honorable life. He may acquire money, position and power but can not achieve prestige, reputation, honor and respect. Liar can not be trustworthy. By the virtue of their position people may fear to respect them, but that is commanded respect and not deserved respect.
Truth is god. Lie is demon. Truth is challenge, lie is easy.Truth can be disturbed but can not be defeated. Lie may get easy success but it is baseless. However, success based on truth has very stong and unshakable base.
That is a great statement, Ajay: Truth can be disturbed but can not be defeated.
Hi Ajay, nice comment. Following on from Paula, I add – i think a lie is misconceived as a strategic tool, it is the weakness it does not cover them (I can’t determine whether it creates the other weaknesses or they create it).
There is a Russian proverb roughly translated to – A lie may get you ahead in the world but you can never go back – nice. Go well. Warm regards Richard
this is so very true of many, and personally it is also at times challenging. The simple thought I have comes from Star Wars (I’m not geeky enough to know which one). Obe Wan Konobi says to Luke – Not “try” Luke, Do or Not Do, Not “try” – It’s a wonderfully simple concept to lodge in your mind, before you expect things just to happen or leave yourself with a hopeful excuse (well I was going to try but…, I was so busy I forgot to…, etc.)
And you Do Dan, and keep doing, so thank you for that.
Richard – thank you for finding another piece of the puzzle for me. I didn’t know where I was inspired by ‘Do or Not Do’ vs ‘try’ vocabulary.
I have been eliminating the word ‘try’ from my vocabulary as well as colleagues, family and friends for years. Try = Hope = Wish. All of which mean very little as they require no change and effort to make something happen.
Believe, Truth, Openingness, Keep Doing, and Stay the Course …. these work.
Richard- I agree completely. It is one of my favorite quotes of all time. For your cultural edification – it was Yoda who told Luke and it was in the second original movie – The Empire Strikes Back.
Thanks Casey, may the force be with you 🙂
Very true, we must focus on today to improve tomorrow. I’m currently reading a book on this topic titled Today Matters by John Maxwell. The book describes step by step how to act on “today” to achieve a better “tomorrow”.
Thanks for you insight on this topic.
Another Home run, Your are a true machine. I’ve had to deal with this in my own life. For the majority of my 20+ years in the Military I had put my career first, above everything. If I was at dinner with my family and the phone rang saying one of my people was in trouble, I dropped my fork and out the door I went. If there was a problem at work I would stay until it got fixed, even if that meant that I was there for several days on end. I’ve missed many family moments due to my work and work ethic. I always justified my sacrifice as “I’m building a better life for my family” Hind sight is a beautiful thing, I wish I knew now what I didn’t know then. My family will be here with me forever, a career will only last so long and then it’s gone. Thank you for your challenging words, you continue to mentor and lead, I appreciate your time and expertise.
‘A dear friend said, “I can’t” That is the essence of your friend’s stuckness.’ Your friend’s past is driving her/his present and future.
How can leaders successfully implement personal change?
“ready.willing.able. in the vocabulary of spirit these words connote something extraordinary… lean forward into your life.”– mary anne radmacher
Easily written and after the first step, often surprisingly easily done because you know you are on the right path.
Leaders have to have all three interwoven in their minds and hearts.
Another great read! I battle with people on this every day at my fire station…we tend to let “being a firefighter” define us. I try to tell these younger guys to leave the Firefighter stuff at the station…nobody else really cares that much. Your wife and your kids just want your presence. Don’t let your career define you! Great job Dan! Keep up the good work!
Dan, I appreciate the message of owning up to what we personally didn’t do, accepting it, sharing it, and moving forward. What you are writing about can be ugly to face, but it isn’t as ugly as we make it out to be. It’s incredibly liberating to take on our breakdowns. On the other side of them are breakthroughs. Nice post.
Love the directness of it, too.
Often, when we are in positions of leadership, or more specifically in the role of organizational leader, we are seduced into becoming what we believe others want us to be. It is an easy facade to adopt because it is rewarded and supported by all. Unfortunately, if it is in conflict with who we are then we are doomed to put aside those things Dan has mentioned in his post. With luck we realize before it is too late that we will one day suffer the losses of what we have left behind and do as Dan has suggested. Be true to yourself and others. Live the life you are supposed to live and not the one you think others want you to live.
Guess what’s getting printed and posted on my wall of quotes?
“You can’t wait to build your future. You already built it yesterday.” ~ Dan Rockwell, LeadershipFreak.
My favorite line in the whole post!
This post truly is eye opening because at times I find myself falling into the same patterns that are shown here. While I appreciate my job ant the opportunities it has afforded me, it can be draining and overwhelming and I endure because I believe in my head that it will eventually get better. At times I can sacrifice my mental and physical health because of this, which is one of my flaws that I try to improve on. Being a young leader within my organization I want to prove my worth and show my resilience in difficult situations, however, have found this to cause burnout. To ensure my longevity in the workplace even though what I may do not be physically demanding, I need to scale back and take priority of my health and well being to ensure I can be effective for years to come. Work will always be there for the taking, however your health is not guaranteed. The same steps that you take to prove value in the workplace should be taken in unison with self-care. Knowing this won’t change overnight, I want to ensure I take small steps in the right direction to make that positive change and to stop living a lie. Instead of staring at a screen for 6 hours straight, I’ll take breaks more frequently. To ensure I am energized for work I’ll try to get full nights of sleep. The longer I prolong the change, the greater chance any damage becomes irreversible.
Thank you, Dan, I know I went quite far back in the blog to find this, but I’m glad I did. Truly, thank you!