“You have participated in every bad decision you have ever made. “ said Andy Stanley at the recent Leadercast event that I attended.

Hmm. That’s true. He goes on to advise that we need to be honest with ourselves, even if the truth makes us feel bad. Brutal honesty is the way to free ourselves of the liar within and become the leaders we are meant to be.

Maja Jovanovic made a similar observation at the Power of the Purse, another event I attended this week, when she read out two opposing evaluations from her McMaster students on her teaching style.

The critical evaluation was brutal, more a personal attack, and as Maja observed, we tend to get all bent out of shape about the few negative comments, instead of focussing on the 99 percent positive ones.

Instead, she chose to examine the negative one and look for the kernel of truth, because, she reckons, there always is one. Her advice, learn from that kernel, and move on. Let it go.

And as you move on, ask yourself why am I doing this? Really? It’s time to face the unfiltered truth, says Stanley.  Often we are suiting someone else’s agenda. Saying yes to be liked, to be the pleaser when deep down, we want to say no.

Stanley encouraged his audience to stick to priorities. Think about what you value most vs. what you want now. It’s a case of the immediate vs. the ultimate. When we keep filling our time with the immediate, we are delaying reaching our ultimate goals. We need to get honest with ourselves about our personal definition of success.   Ask yourself what you want people to say about you at your funeral? He challenged.

Most leaders don’t get to where they are on their own. Tell yourself “I will not attempt to lead myself by myself.” instructed Stanley.   Our immediate circle of friends and family often determine the direction and quality of your life, he observed.

And this may mean you have to disconnect as the immediate circle are not part of your ultimate goal, and can hold you back. As he observed, the people who tell you that you can’t do something, are usually the ones who are afraid you will.

Difficult truths. And yet, if we are to reach our desired goals, we have to be true to ourselves. We need to fire the liar within.

Anne Day

Anne Day

Company of Women

I have had an eclectic career from running non-profit organizations and being editor of a national magazine, to working for government on women’s issues. In 2003 I launched Company of Women, an organization that supports women in business. A prolific blogger, I also write for the Huffington Post, and several other online publications. I am the author of five books on women and entrepreneurship, and co-author of Good Enough. Embrace who you are. Unleash your brilliance. which is available on amazon.ca In June, 2016 I launched Full Circle Publishing offering one-stop services to get your words out into the world.