Why Self-Leadership Means You Win No Matter What

I’m a believer in leadership but I’m an even bigger believer in Self-Leadership or leading yourself to success. Let me explain.

I see a tremendous amount of guidance about how leaders should lead and about how managers should manage. And it’s a valuable contribution. But how many articles have you read about how to lead yourself?

Have you ever read an article about how to motivate people and wondered – ‘Why aren’t people motivating themselves?’ It’s their life and career after all.

It’s liberating, energising and rewarding when you take full control of your choices, performance and behaviour.

The Incredible Power Of Leading Yourself to Success

7 Dimensions of Self-Leadership


Ask yourself these two important questions. What do you want? When do you want it?

If you can’t answer the first then you certainly won’t be able to answer the second. There’s only one reason you can’t answer the first. You haven’t tried hard enough! That’s how you become dependent on someone else’s answer for you. If you have a Plan A, where your current employer gives you the next role you want or believe you deserve, this is still a risky strategy. You need a Plan B and C that so you’re not dependent on one narrow option.


Whether you are employed or self-employed this is what you’ll do if you’re a self-starter:

  • Set your own challenging goals rather than expect others to set your goals for you
  • Propose and implement solutions rather than just point out problems
  • Always bring energy, ideas and motivation
  • Begin when you know enough not when you know it all
  • And if you don’t know you find out


It doesn’t matter how much or how little encouragement you get from others true confidence comes from within. You choose to be confident as a person and you develop the skills, knowledge and experiences you require to apply that confidence effectively in specific situations. Someone once said to me that people run out of self-belief far sooner than they run out of ability and potential.


So what could you achieve if you really wanted to? Forget the check-list of competencies that go with your role and think about what you would truly like to achieve. Take off the shackles – liberate your mind, blow away the cobwebs and let the sun shine in. If your development is not your choice you won’t be motivated about it.


Set your own standards. It’s said that you are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. Generally this means you come down to the level of others. Choose to rise above it. Choose your attitude and choose your values. Successful people surround themselves with can do, optimistic people and you can do the same. Go find some.


Jim Collins developed the idea of Level 5 leadership and showed how Level 5 leaders take responsibility when things go wrong – he likened it to humility. So be a Level 5 Self-Leader. This is the heart of Self-Leadership. Avoid blaming others or behaving like a victim without power and seize complete responsibility for yourself.


Aristotle said, ‘You are what you repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.’ (my italics). If you are a Self-Leader you’ll apply yourself conscientiously to being who you’ve chosen to be and to what you have decided to achieve. If you want to know what choices you have already subconsciously made just look at what you are doing and what you are not doing. It’s simple. You are what you do.

Chris Wisdom is the Author of BOOST – How To Turn Your Talents And Potential Into Lasting Success
“Guaranteed to give you that needed Boost! for lasting success. Chris Wisdom’s insights will motivate you to take action today!” – Marshall Goldsmith, author of the New York Times bestseller, What Got You Here Won’t Get You There.

Here’s A Tip: Share The Love

Self-Leadership is the opposite of self-obsession. Developing these 7 qualities establishes a platform for building great things with others. Self-leadership enables the kind of personal certainty that frees you to focus on helping others succeed too. And as Self-Leader that’s definitely worth knowing.


Image courtesy of winnond: freedigitalphotos