How to lead yourself – it’s not just for people in business but in life

how to lead yourself

“A good leader must understand what makes a good life and how to help people find that. A leader’s job is not to provide a paycheck and benefits: It’s about helping people be truly happy and find meaning in their work and life. When a leader succeeds with this, it unlocks real performance.”

― Rasmus Hougaard

I recently started reading this book, which caught my eye on a library shelf. The Mind of the Leader: How to Lead Yourself, Your People, and Your Organization for Extraordinary Results by Rasmus Hougaard and Jacqueline Carter.

Whenever I discover a book that inspires me as I’m reading it, I like to share it with individuals I know will also appreciate its message.

My current supervisor and I both have an affinity for quality leadership in business – a skillset he certainly understands and applies. So, sharing this book with him was a no-brainer.

After downloading the book to his Kindle to read on his next business trip, he text me the following question: “You know what’s interesting about these books? How many people read books on how to be a great team player or employee?”

I thought about it for a minute and realized just how many books there are on the market which focus on how to be a good leader, how to deal with a bad leader and everything in between.

But there aren’t as many books which focus specifically on being a better employee. Interesting.

I thought about it a little more and crafted this response: “In one way or another, aren’t we all leading something or someone? Couldn’t we all benefit from being better leaders in life?”

Unlike so many other leadership books I’ve read over the years, this book focuses on how to lead yourself, for if you’re not doing a great job at that, how can you effectively lead others?

It forces readers to do something our society is terrified of – looking in the mirror and focusing on our strengths, shortcomings and opportunities to improve. When was the last time you were that reflective?

In Bryant McGill’s book Simple Reminders: Inspiration for Living Your Best Life, he writes, “People who have had little self-reflection live life in a huge reality blind-spot”. That doesn’t sound like a good place to be.

Whether you’re leading a Fortune 500 Company, a retail store, a consulting group, a local sports team, a classroom, a political office or even a household, it’s important that we take the time to learn how to lead yourself.

How do we do that?

“Leadership today is about unlearning management and relearning being human.” ― Rasmus Hougaard