Where are you?
“You are here.”
As soon as I had stepped out of the London underground tube station onto the street outside my maps app had located where I was. However, what I now needed to know was “which direction to take”, and it wasn’t much help with that.
We decided that we wanted a snack before heading to our destination and I thought I knew where to find one of our favourites, a Subway store, so off we set. It didn’t take long to realise that I needed the help of my trusty Maps app again to find a suitable vendor, so I typed the store into my maps app and followed the directions. Before long we were right back where we had started!
That’s when it dawned on me that “Subway” could mean more than one thing, and the Apple Maps app thought I wanted to locate a tube station! After figuring out that the food outlet was nowhere near the tube station we had emerged from a few minutes earlier we used a different search term for finding directions to our lunch successfully.
“Make it thy business to know thyself, which is the most difficult lesson in the world.”
~ Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
John Maxwell’s “Law of Awareness” says you must know yourself to grow yourself. What that means is that in order to achieve growth, leaders must hone in on who they are and what they desire to do. It also means that you need to know which way will take you towards your destination rather than away from it and that you have correctly identified your destination!
My current season of life’s journey started with an event that challenged me to look at my
- Strengths & weaknesses
- Interests and opportunities
- Life experiences and lessons
This led me to a new and fresh understanding of the direction and destination I wanted to pursue for this next season in my life, and also led to a good friend saying to me: “Rarely is someone’s vocation and anointing shown to me so clearly as yours. Rest well in it. You are sure to flourish my friend.” It is leading me to new challenges and opportunities, and to explore well beyond the boundary of my comfort zone and into my Inspiration Zone.
“No one can produce great things who is not thoroughly sincere in dealing with himself”
~ James Russell Lowell
When I was studying for my engineering finals at Loughborough University (we had tee shirts with “Lufbra” emblazoned on the front to help us remember how to say that) I decided that some steady exercise would be helpful as part of my revision routine, and since there was a pool nearby I decided that a swim would be a good solution. However, I could manage no more than one length without gasping for breath. That was until my friend Steve, who was at Loughborough on a sports degree, helped me to find a way to regulate my breathing as part of my swimming style and within a week I was regularly swimming a mile non-stop!
“No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.”
~ Albert Einstein
I knew what I could do, and I knew what I wanted to do. It wasn’t until I had some help that I discovered how to get from where I was to where I wanted to go.
John Maxwell suggests that in terms of awareness there are three states to be in. The first is to be confused or flummoxed. That’s when we don’t know what we would like to do. The second is to be frustrated, which is when we know what to do, but don’t do it. Finally, we can be fulfilled, and this is when we know what to do, and we do it.
My current home was built as the 20th Century started, around 1906, and when my family moved in we were invited round to visit our neighbour as a welcome “get to know you” time. During that visit, they showed us around their garden, which had an old toilet facility which they said had sadly never worked. “It would have been so useful over the last 15 years as our children had been growing up” they told us. Well, I pulled on the chain attached to the high-level flush and to our surprise it worked!
If only they had known that 15 years earlier then it could have been so useful and would have been very well used. How many things do we have available for use that we just don’t realise could work, and if only we had been aware of them could have been put to so much good use? How many skills, talents and aptitudes do we have tucked away somewhere, and we just need to learn how to regulate our breathing or pull the chain, and they would be able to be put to effective use.
The first step toward change is awareness. The second step is acceptance.”
~ Nathaniel Branden
About Roger Fairhead
Roger is a Leadership specialist and uses the PRIZE Winning Leadership model to help leaders improve their effectiveness and that of their teams, through remote and on-site delivery of keynotes, group training events and individual coaching sessions.
He is the author of several books including "PRIZE Winning Leadership" and “Personal Productivity Planner”, a Chartered Engineer, a Fellow of the Institute of Leadership and Management and a Director of the Global Leadership Network UK with extensive experience in Project Management and Sales.
“He is articulate, tracks complex issues with ease and has an incredible gift for raising pearls of wisdom out of the murky depths of people and process.” His passion is to help people to learn effective leadership skills to lead their teams to capitalize on their strengths and passions to realize their dreams.
Roger also invests into the dreams of families in the world’s underserved communities to offer them small loans that empower them to invest in their future, to provide for their families and give back to their communities.