By: Undre Griggs, Jr
Confidence is a beneficial trait for a leader to possess. Confident leaders will be able to overcome fear and doubt; they can show vulnerability and be able to admit their mistakes.
Isaiah 41:10 (ESV): Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Like most things, we need to be careful about having too much of anything. Too much confidence can lead to arrogance and the belief that we are always right or unable to fail. Confident leaders welcome alternative thoughts and perspectives; while arrogant leaders have difficulty seeing the gifts and strengths of others. Confident leaders are generally viewed as dependable and admirable; while arrogant leaders are typically viewed negatively and undesirable to people as a whole. Understandably, anyone who believes they are always right and unable to accept the influence of others is likely an obnoxious person and difficult to be around.
Luke 18:9,11,13-14 (NKJV): 9To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: 11The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 13“But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’ 14“I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”
Confident leaders understand the likelihood of success and the chance of failure. They plan appropriately for the ensuing risk and invest time preparing not only themselves, but their entire team. Arrogant leaders will find success, but it will be with considerable expense. Their successes will be short lived because of their inability to see the value in others. Their overconfidence will also lead to a lack of self-awareness, making it difficult for them to make accurate and successful decisions. These tend to make it difficult for them to accept guidance and feedback; as well as learning from their mistakes (Romans 12:3). As effective leaders, we should strive and nurture confidence; caring about the success of the team, as much, if not more than the success of the mission.
The benefits of detoxing are immense and beneficial to our overall health. Many detox program followers report feeling peaceful and energetic. This is due to the fact that while we’re detoxing, we are eliminating the influx of things that caused us to need to detox in the first place. By cutting out sugar, caffeine, trans and saturated fat, our mind and body will have an immediate and positive reaction. Then when we combine the elimination of unhealthy food with the increase of healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables; the impact is only that much greater.
Weight of the world on our mind. The need to detox our mind with the words of God is equally important and beneficial. As we take in negativity from the media and our interactions with the world, it can weigh on our mind. That is part of the reason we are told not to grow weary in doing good (Galatians 6:9). There is an understanding we may be saddened by the way people treat each other and the fact that wrong seems to be celebrated. We will look around and see a world where selfishness is portrayed as good sense or a means of survival. Cleansing our mind. As with any good detox, we first need to stop taking in the negativity that is having an undesirable effect on our consciousness. Christians are to be transformed from the world by the renewing of their mind; focusing on what is good and acceptable to God (Romans 12:2). Oftentimes, we overlook this aspect of detoxing our mind. Removing the negativity is a good start, but it is not enough for us to stop eating sugar and saturated fats; because we still need to eat. Like our body, our mind needs to be fed something in order to grow and have energy. Once we limit our consumption of negativity, we must then increase our consumption of optimism.
There is no greater a book than the Bible to feed our optimism; we can read about the last becoming first and of good conquering evil. In fact, Jesus Christ wants us to focus on the positive. Philippians 4:8 (NKJV), "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things." Jesus wants us to read scripture. Joshua 1:8 (NKJV), "This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success." Jesus Christ wants us to be the light in a dark world. Matthew 5:16 (ESV), "In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven."
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By: Undre Griggs, Jr.
There is a delicate balance between constructive criticism and unproductive criticism. One key difference is constructive criticism is things the listener is able to change and improve to better themselves. Conversely, unproductive criticism is likely matters of opinion that have no intrinsic value on the listener. A leader understands they will need to know the difference because they are responsible for bringing the best out of their people. A leader cannot simply tell everyone what they want to hear all the time; it will create an environment of complacency and indifference. Instead a leader will inspire their team with honest, but helpful rhetoric that will benefit the listener immensely.
Ephesians 4:29 (NIV): Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
There is a reoccurring theme of “hope through the tough times” that a leader is required to cultivate. This is due to the reality of life; failure can happen whether we do everything correctly or not. A leader has to prepare both themselves and the team accordingly. We should be able to find joy and peace through the trials and failures of life; we should find strength knowing that we can overcome even the most difficult of situations.
Romans 15:13 (NKJV): Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
An effective leader will have created an environment where failure is seen as nothing more than a learning experience. Where effort is rewarded and congratulated by peers because it is better to try and fail than it is to not try at all. An effective leader will ensure the team is invested in the accomplishments of the organization as well as making sure everyone understands hard work is appreciated. There is a tremendous value in a leader and their entire organization working to inspire each other.
Hebrews 10:25 (ESV): Not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
One of the best ways for a leader to create an inspirational nucleus is by having everyone build healthy friendships in and outside of work. Our friends and family have a superlative ability to inspire us because they have shown they care about our well-being. When they tell us we can do something better, we believe them because they know us. If a leader only interacts with their team when they need something, they may be able to motivate them for a time; but they will have a difficult time consistently inspiring them to achieve greater heights.
By: Undre Griggs, Jr.
Patience will allow an effective leader the foresight to stay composed and collected through any situation. A patient leader will endure through the difficult times and they will motivate their team to do so as well. Those who lack patience frequently change their plans whenever something unexpected happens. Patience and longsuffering are the sign of a leader that keeps their word and will do everything they can to see the mission to its end.
Psalm 37:7-9 (ESV): Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way, over the man who carries out evil devices! Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath! Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil. For the evildoers shall be cut off, but those who wait for the Lord shall inherit the land.
As a result, patient leaders will be reliable; making them easy for the team and organization to believe in them. Imagine if we were a college athlete who had the opportunity to attend any university we desired. Many things may factor into this decision; proximity to home, school ranking, and whether the degree we were seeking was being offered to name a few. We would also likely want to meet the coach, his staff, and ask them how they intended to utilize us on the team. If we have the option to choose between a coach who has coached five teams over the past five years or a coach who has coached the same team for a decade; we are going to choose the more reliable and patient coach.
2 Peter 3:9 (ESV): The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
A patient leader creates hope for their people. When we know our leader is there through thick and thin, it is one less thing we have to worry about. When the waves rise and the winds howl, everyone looks to the captain for composure and guidance. It is easy for the captain to be patient when things are going good, but it is essential for a captain to be patient when turmoil arises.
Romans 12:12 (ESV): Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.
In any organization, mistakes will happen and issues will arise. A leader must be patient with his or her team if they expect their team to be patient with them and each other. Patience creates an environment where people are more focused on the solution than they are on who is to blame. A patient environment will understand loyalty to each other is the recipe of success. We are not talking about loyalty in the sense that everyone agrees with everything everyone says. We are talking about loyalty in the sense that we are patient with those we provide and receive constructive criticism from. With this understanding, let us be patient with each other as we grow and learn together.