Ruth Friddle

Collected inspiration.

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I Am Not a Leader (or So I Thought)

~ from

~ by Tammy Helfrich


“I don’t have a leader title.”

“I don’t have anyone who reports to me.”

“I don’t have experience leading people.”

I used to say these things, as an excuse. I used to say I am not a leader. I used to believe I was not a leader.And do you know what happens when you believe that? You’re lying to yourself.

For most of my life, people had told me that I was a good example for others. But I didn’t always believe it. I often kept people at arm’s length. I didn’t allow them in. I didn’t want to get involved in their stories. That required work.

I have discovered over the years that even though I never wanted a leader title, I was a leader to my peers. I worked hard, and I had good relationships. I always did above and beyond what my job required. I got to know my leaders. I kept a positive attitude. I led by example.

In his book, The 360 Degree Leader, John Maxwell talks about the circle of influence you have. Sometimes people within the middle of an organization have more power than those with leadership titles.

I started paying attention to this. I started conversations with leaders at all levels of our organization. I didn’t have a hidden agenda. I simply wanted to learn and let them know I was with them—I believed in them. I wanted to learn from them.

John Maxwell says,

What matters is that we are willing to do what it takes, to make a positive impact wherever we find ourselves in life—to add value in any way we can to others.”

I believe we can all do this. We can be a leader, regardless of what our title says.

How can you be a leader? There are five tactics.

  1. Take ownership. Be responsible for your work. You own the work that you do. You own your processes. When you do this, people start to notice, and you can help lead others to do the same.
  2. Lead by example. Actions speak louder than words. Be the positive voice within your department, rather than the negative one. Encourage others to look at situations with a positive energy.
  3. Talk to leaders in your organization. Don’t expect anything in return. You will be amazed at how many leaders are willing to talk to you. Not only do they want to hear your ideas, but they are typically more than happy to share what has worked for them.
  4. Offer ideas, don’t just report a problem. Be sure to offer a solution. Many of the best solutions to a company’s challenges come from the middle of an organization. Why? Because these are the people who know what truly happens on a day-to-day basis. Leaders who are willing to listen can often create change with the right ideas and solutions.
  5. Encourage coworkers and leaders. Most people will encourage their coworkers. They work side-by-side with them. However, leaders rarely get encouragement, and it can get very lonely at the top. Showing them you care and you are with them really helps. I have been absolutely amazed at the positive responses I have had from leaders who took my encouragement to heart.

You are a leader. Believe you are a leader. Take a small step forward today. You will be amazed at what a difference it will make.


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~ Terry Tempest Williams

Beauty is not optional, but it is a strategy for survival.

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A good manager…

~David Kanigan

I believe that a manager is responsible for feeding families…and feeding and nourishing souls.  It is a privilege.  An honor.  Something that should be cherished.  And not toyed with in a climb to the top.

It’s a matter of treating your team with the utmost of reverence and respect.

It is then my obligation to Be Good.  Do Good. See Good. Tease out the good.  Make them Good.

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Are You on the Right Path?

One of the first things successful people realize is the old adage, “If it is to be, it is up to me.” Your success and your course is up to you. Jim Rohn, the late personal development icon, said you must ask yourself this question: Are all the disciplines I’m currently engaged in taking me where I want to go?

“What an important question to ask yourself at the beginning of the month, the beginning of the week, the beginning of the day. You don’t ever want to ever kid yourself—hoping you will arrive at a good destination when you’re not even headed that way,” Rohn says.

Ask yourself if the direction you are headed is what you want for your life and if it’s your own direction.

“After you have answered these questions within yourself, then take it one step further and ask, ‘What am I doing that is working or not working?’ Debate it all,” Rohn says. “Let the power of your own ambition take you where you want to go, to do what you want to do, to create the life you want to live.”

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Life’s Biggest Secret

~by Zack – BA Expat

The remarkable thing about life is that you are the master of your mind, the undisputed main character in an epic journey through this world. Command your mind or your body and it will obey. You can use this power to shape your future as you see fit; your legs will walk to the gym even if you’re lethargic, your vocal chords will produce sound even if you’re nervous to speak up.

But, for all of the incredible features that come standard on the Human Body, autopilot is not one of them. In the absence of instructions, your mind and body will remain in the default state of Doing Nothing. It will not make friends for you if you don’t socialize, it will not find you a new job if you don’t seek out opportunities.

Each command you give, each action you set in motion, is a small building block of your life. And in the end, the actions sum up to tell your story. Action transforms the athlete into the Olympian, a napkin sketch into an invention, two separate lives at a cocktail party into a forever entangled and intertwined existence.

Yet still we postpone, sitting idly and waiting for the mythical force of Motivation to compel us to leap forward and seize the day. Motivation – an unreliable tide that ebbs and flows as it pleases, seldom punctual or convenient. Motivation – a concept we’ve invented, a purgatory between Ideas and Execution, the scapegoat for why we don’t have the habits we want or the success we desire.

It’s all nonsense: you don’t have to wait to be motivated. You can simply get up and Do – begin to build new habits through action, even in the absence of motivation. Grab the controls of your amazing machine and order it forward. Decouple yourself from motivation – decide to do things because they will bring you health or happiness, not because they happen to coincide with a momentary burst of motivational energy.

You will cover oceans while the rest of the world sprints across fields during brief, fleeting moments of inspiration. You will accomplish what others only dreamed possible while onlookers marvel at everything you’re able to accomplish, to-do lists and bucket lists alike fading into distant memory as you charge forward through life.

Read more. Lose weight. Travel. Exercise. Learn to dance.

So many of our goals are not goals at all, but simply actions – binary in nature, they are accomplished merely by deciding to be done. Read and you have read. Eat better and you have lost weight. Get on a plane and you have traveled. Run and you have exercised. Take a lesson and you’ve learned to dance.

“Do, or do not. There is no try.”  Life really is that simple.