Effectiveness comes through reaching your full potential. Sounds easy, but how do you arrive at this destination of full potential? I have listed seven landmarks for the journey (not in the order of importance).
4. Strengths: Ask, “What am I really good at?” Spend the majority of your continuous improvement time developing your strengths. This is the secret to making a mark of excellence. Spending all your time developing your weaknesses will only allow you to become average. Spend your time doing what you do best, and delegate the rest away. You cannot do everything, and you should not attempt to. Work smarter, not harder.
Bob Buford in Halftime says, “My passion is to multiply all that God has given me, and in the process, give it back.”
5. Success: It doesn’t happen overnight. It is a journey. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. Right decisions done repeatedly over time will compound success. Peter Drucker says that you should work on things that will make a great deal of difference if you were to succeed. What is success? John Maxwell in The Success Journey reveals, “Success is knowing your purpose in life, growing to reach your maximum potential, and sowing seeds that benefit others.” Vaclav Havel adds, “The real test of a man is not when he plays the role that he wants for himself, but when he plays the role destiny has for him.”
6. Servant: Maintain a servant’s heart. A servant is not only willing to serve, but goes beyond the expectation of others. Biblically a servant that does only what is expected, remains unprofitable. “And the servant is not even thanked because he is merely doing what he is supposed to do” (Luke 17:9, NLT).
Sometimes it will be necessary to just say, “No!” to some tasks in order to do a better job at what you should be doing. Effective leaders learn when to say, “No!” Buford says that you should not accept work that you do not want to do, or that you have time to do. Unwanted work becomes a chore, and becomes an unpleasant taskmaster.
7. Stop: Take stock. Take time-out regularly to inventory, and reflect on what you have accomplished, and what you intend to accomplish in the future. Measure everything that comes your way according your vision, passion, giftedness, and personal ministry.
There are many roadblocks on the journey to reaching your full potential, and each one will try to detour you from you destination. A zillion motorists disguised as important work assignments will endeavor to slow you down. Keep your eye on your vision. Watch for the landmarks along the way. Slow down, and occasionally stop to make sure you are moving in the right direction. Get back on the road, and keep moving. Your destiny is in sight. Your fullest potential is just ahead.