Becoming a leader of character is a process that never ends. It is a never ending road towards a destination you can never completely reach. But, leaders must take this road daily in order to grow and lead well.
I had the benefit of my father, General Jim Anderson, and four years of training at West Point to guide me towards being a leader of character. One of the reasons I began to blog, consult and coach on this subject is I realized how blessed I was compared to most aspiring leaders. I had guides!
I define character as: Our habitual way of operating.
But how does one develop character without the benefit of a leader of character for a dad or a 4 year leadership school? It starts by understanding how our character is formed.
· Begins with our thoughts.
· Our thoughts become our words.
· Our words lead to our actions.
· Our actions become habits.
· Our habits determine our character.
· Our character determines our destiny.
4 Steps To Becoming A Leader Of Character
1. Character Formation Begins With My Thoughts: I must spend time filling my mind with positive influences.
· Read: A leader who doesn’t read has the same opportunity to grow as and illiterate.
· Mentors/Friends: I become most like the people I spend the most time with. Spend time with people who already are where or who I want to be.
· Turn Off TV: It amazes me how much more time I have to read when I fast from the television.
· Reading Pulp: Entertainment magazines, only junk novels, rants on the internet that offer nothing but criticism.
· Negative Friends: These are people who live life for only themselves. They have questionable moral standards and rarely offer anything positive to say.
· Limit Mindless Input: Do we really need to watch EVERY singing competition on TV, SportsCenter multiple times a day, House Hunters reruns or tasteless YouTube videos?
· Read these: the Bible, biographies about role models, leadership books, articles and blogs.
2. My Thoughts Become My Words: I must capture my bad thoughts and share my best ones.
· Speak truth- Speak aloud my convictions about right and wrong.
· Be A Problem Solver- Offer positive solutions.
· Share- Character building things I learned this week with others.
· Gossip- Serves no purpose but to make me feel better about myself.
· Complaining- W