I encourage people to lead. It’s one of the things I do. I tell people all the time time that I believe they can initiate a change, they can sustain a way of doing things they feel is threatened and they can grow other leaders.
Recently, I’ve been wondering why I do this, for that matter why do any of us decide to do anything.
My sense is most often it’s got to do with the consequences of doing or not doing. We weigh the upsides and the downsides and fall down on one side or the other and either do or don’t do something.
Weighing the options brings our values into play. The relationship between people’s values and what they value is another source of interest for me as some people’s upsides are other people’s downsides.
I like to describe culture as when you remember the answer, but have forgotten the question. By that I mean I/we make a lot of decisions on autopilot. That’s just the way we do things. A lot of decisions aren’t really thought about. They’re almost instinctively made according to our unconscious values that lead us to value one option over another.
What about those decisions we make that aren’t obviously in our own best interest? For me this is where this field of thought becomes even more intriguing.
I, like others, periodically make decisions where the consequences are not necessarily to my obvious benefit. The prime example is, as a husband and father, I make sacrifices, frequently with out seeming to think about it. I’m not making a big deal about this; it’s just what you do.
This is where the role of identity comes into play in the decision-making process.
Who am I? What kind of person am I? What does a person like me do in a situation like this?
Well, I see myself as someone who grows leaders. My self appointed mission is to enjoy life and enthuse others to find joy in their life. Some days I’m more successful than others.
In that role I share my belief in others’ ability to lead. As such,let me encourage you to think about your values, about your identity i.e what kind of person you are.
Then choose to be the kind of person who can and start making decisions in light of that conscious self image.
I believe you’ll be happier with your decisions when you make them consciously.
I believe you’ll be happier deciding to behave into your image of your conscious self.
I know I am when I do.