We have all read many times that as you go through life, there will be people who motivate and inspire you, and there will be people who try to tear you down, demoralize, dehumanize and demotivate you. People who are jealous, threatened or who just may be miserable themselves, who will do their best to stop you from succeeding. And then there are those who will lift you up, inspire, motivate and encourage. Those are the true leaders in the world, regardless of job title or position.
It was may years ago that I sat I her office one afternoon. As vice president of the company we worked for, I was shocked to hear the words that same out of her mouth. She told me that I was too stupid to work at that company. And as I listened to her, I made a promise to myself that as a leader, I would never do to her what she was trying to do to me.
First, let me say that I thank her now, so many years later. Because that negative experience motivated me in a way that I then could not have imaged. She was not a leader she was just a boss. A leader would never have said anyone was “too stupid”, even if it were true.
Had I been younger, less confident and more impressionable, she as the vice president, would have greatly damaged my confidence and self image. There is a saying that with power comes great responsibility, and that is true. What was not true was what she was saying. The only thing it did was show how little class she had, and motivate me to be a much better leader than the example sitting in front of me.
I want to always inspire others. Because to be able to inspire others, to make them think or feel, to help them believe in themselves, to help them feel love for themselves and others, to me, that is the most amazing thing to do. And if I can do that, just a little, then that is can incredible blessing.
So when someone shows you that they are a boss and not a leader, when you have someone who says something so cruel and unprofessional, you can use that and turn it into a positive. An example of what not to do and how to be better than those who are beneath you, even if they are above your pay grade.
Why do some want to tear you down? Who knows. It could be that they are threatened, or jealous of you and your success, or they are just miserable themselves. And honestly it doesn’t really matter why they do what they do, just that you do not listen to them. Or that you use what they do or say as a platform on which to build. You should be so busy working to make your life fabulous, that you don’t have time to take what they say to heart. Build on their words and negativity. You have the power to turn it into something positive, something beautiful.
From that job, have been blessed to be a successful writer, working for some of the most amazing companies. I have had the pleasure of working with and learning from some incredible leaders, and they have never demoralized anyone like that one boss. Every great leader I have had, has inspired others to believe in themselves and their abilities. They have taken opportunities to teach and give constructive criticism that made that person want to be better. That is leader.
So please, please, don’t let let those who would try to tear you down, break your spirit or just be mean, affect your self worth. Whether it is on a professional or personal level, only those who are there to inspire you have your best interest at heart. A leader will never insult you, never tell you are you stupid, or ugly, or dumb, or defective in away. if someone says these things, it says more about them than it does about you.
That is not to say that those who love you will never criticize, but learn the difference between those who may be concerned and are truly trying to help, and those who simply want to entertain themselves watching your pain. And then, reach deep inside you, deep where light does not even go, and turn that pain power.