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The Cynic is Never a Good Leader

Leaders of Character focus on what can be done and lead hopeful teams. Cynics focus on what might not work and create helpless individuals.


Some people are very gifted at playing the role of the devil’s advocate. They are quick to poke holes in plans and tell us why something is not possible. They make it a priority to bring other people “back down to earth.” Honestly, someone playing the devil’s advocate role is not a bad idea when I am around. Because I can be an optimist to a fault.  It is good for someone to slow me down a bit and make me think things through more carefully. The problem lies when someone makes the role of devil’s advocate a lifestyle choice.


The world is full of cynics. Wherever we go, we encounter the cynical attitudes of others. Cynics never encourage, they discourage. Cynics never lead change, they manage the status quo. In fact, cynics often hate two things:  Change and the way things are. The cynics tend to pull others into their negativity. They may call it a “reality check” because they are good at seeing the problems. But their view  of reality convinces a lot of us to hold back, don’t risk it, or that something can’t be done. In that environment, opportunities fade and hope disappears.


For the rest of us, this is the moment of truth. This is where we must choose Courage and Positivity instead of fear and negativity. Only brave people have hope in the possibilities and reject the naysayers that may surround us. Courage and Positivity are the cornerstones of hope. Fear and negativity are the cornerstones of despair. When we listen to the people who say something is hopeless, we are letting them project their fears and negativity onto us.


Leaders of Character focus on what can be done and lead hopeful teams. Cynics focus on what might not work and create helpless individuals.


If you are someone who is allowing the cynics around you to drive you to be cynical as well - Choose to fight the cynisism!  Choose the Courage to keep going. Choose the Positivity to say “Can do” and not give up. Don’t surrender to cynicism. Fight it!


Fighting the cynics won’t change the reality.  But the hope you build in that fight will change YOU! And then, you will want to share your hope with others. Hope is not about ignoring reality.  Hope is choosing to see the reality that the cynics see and having the Courage to face that reality and see the possibilities that become clear when you exercise Positivity as well.


If a cynic is reading this right now, my hope is that you will look in the mirror and decide that this time, the change is worth it. You see that being a cynic will never inspire anyone to follow you and you decide to be that person in the future who leads with hope.



●      When has a cynic’s “reality check” stopped change?

●      How could you bring hope into a situation like this?


Here is a quick assessment that will take you 5 minutes to figure it out. Nobody will ever see your results but you.


Warning: If you are not going to be honest with yourself this is a worthless assessment.

To take the assessment use the QR code above or go to

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