INFLUENCE = LEADERSHIP

     How can I become a leader is often something a person striving toward their dreams asks themselves because they've come to the realization that, no matter their current title, they're lacking influence. Influence over others is all leadership is, and to attain it you must be worthy of following. I don't just mean people should want to 'follow you' as in your social media accounts. They should crave your opinion and seek you out based on your skill set.

     In this day and age, that act of seeking you out is likely to be done on social media platforms. Every amazing leader is always a student of other leaders. This is possible because all leaders have a common trait amongst them and that is that they all share their story! They offer what ever knowledge they have freely and openly so that others use it and turn it into their own successes. Our unique story is our gift that's meant to be given to the world.

     It might sound scary at first--that's totally normal. Fear of the unknown is natural, but not learning and continuing to grow is a choice. Separation is the result. Love is the opposite of fear, and the important thing is to find common ground with those whom we are the most different from. They are the teachers of our greatest lessons. Patience, if nothing more, can be gained.

     Create a loyal following by supplying awesome content that people will seek you out for. You will not influence anyone in an area you're not passionate about or familiar with. Be reliable. Show up everyday an set the example. You can't expect anything from anyone that you don't first show them. Ask people questions, and...wait for it...LISTEN to the answers. Try to understand where they're coming from and relate in any way possible. Be valuable to the people who seek you...otherwise they won't. On top of just showing up, you gotta show up and give 'em what ya got! Share all of your passions, it will make you shine and people respond to that more than anything else. A leader is always there for their supporters. Without them, a leader doesn't exist. The engagement and support you show them is appreciated and reciprocated. All good leaders want to bring others up with them. It shows, and for it they're rewarded with loyalty. 

     When you're fortunate enough to have influence over others, don't forget to tell them how appreciative you are. They are special and bring something to the table- point that out. I like to make a conscious effort to offer recognition to other people for their input. I love being a fitness and wellness coach on the team Motivational Mindset because I believe in people, and bringing out their excitement as they start to believe in themselves is a pleasure. I encourage people to use their talents to achieve greatness. Beyond believing in me, my teammates start to see themselves as the leaders they are. With that, they start to push harder and reach their goals faster because they're realizing their potential. I encourage people to break their previous boundaries and create a new definition by which they measure greatness.

     Life is about making connections, and this knowledge is inherent. It goes beyond what we've been taught or have learned along the way-- it's a feeling. We all desire to be understood, accepted and loved. Leaders are excellent at connecting with a variety of other people. These connections are what gives influence. The purest good and darkest evil resides in each of us- and which one is winning out can change in a nanosecond. See the good in people, and treat them as if that's all you see. This will spark the loyalty an awesome leader needs from their following. Remember to lift people up. Words have power and influence- so let's step up our vocabulary. Be conscious...be change...be light.

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