One of my favorite authors is Bob Goff. His writing is always challenging, positive, and engaging for me. His focus is usually on what “love does” and in one of his latest releases Goff writes:
…we’re known for our actions. The power of love is in the sacrifice and commitment it requires. Sacrifice and commitment always travel with love and action. Love looks like showing up with hands to help even when we don’t know what to do. Love looks like stopping by even if we don’t know what to say. Simply put, love doesn’t just think about it; love does it.
— Bob Goff, Live in Grace, Walk in Love (p. 13)
In my world love and leadership go hand-in-hand, so when Goff writes love, I often read leadership into it. The quote above struck me so much because I believe that leaders are known for their actions. If your actions are not telling the narrative of your leadership life, then perhaps you are not leading where you intended to go. Taking the time to reflect on your actions and the results on those around you has proven, to me, to be the absolute best use of my time in a day. That’s not just true for those in positions defined as “leadership”, but it is true for every single one of us.
Every day, teachers actions are leading students who are looking for a path. Every day, secretaries actions are communicating empathy to an often beleaguered staff. Every day, custodians actions are communicating care for each person they are around. Every day, technicians are communicating partnership with the teachers and students they assist.
Our actions ARE leadership, whether we mean them to be or not. Understanding that, and then accepting that, means that we change how we do. We make sacrifices, we establish new priorities, we commit to doing what it takes to lead those around us where we intended to.
I know this, if all of us took the time to reflect on our actions and then commit to leading by doing, this world would certainly be a better more joy filled place.