You’ve created your vision for your business, career, and other aspects of your life in 2011 and can clearly see it playing out in your mind.  If asked, you could clearly articulate it to others.  You know how important this vision is to your success in all parts of your life and you’re fully committed to bringing it to life.

What could possibly get in the way?  Surprisingly, you.

You see, the secret to being fully empowered – by you – to bring your own vision for your business and your life to fruition is to be true to yourself and honor yourself at each point along the path when critical decisions must be made.

Should you pursue the client that doesn’t seem like a great fit or has a conflicting value system as a favor to someone important to you? Should you spend time on an exciting new side project that takes you away from critical initiatives?  What about the request by a local non-profit for pro bono support? 

Should you invest, divest, collaborate, negotiate, sign on the dotted line or simply take time off and spend uninterrupted time with the ones you love?


It all depends on whether, at each critical juncture on the road to your vision, doing these things honors who you are – beyond the question of whether they help you move toward your vision.

Because let’s face it, your strategies to move you down the path toward your vision are not going to play out exactly the way you’ve planned.  You’ll be faced with decisions at various points along the way and what I’m encouraging you to do is to think past whether this particular path will get you to the vision…

I want you to think about how this particular path will affect you – physically, emotionally and even spiritually – as you travel it.

I discovered in 2010 that so much of what I was doing did not – in any way – honor who I really am.  More so than not I was making choices from fear (of disappointing someone, of missing out on an opportunity or additional income…) rather than from a place of knowing what was right for me.

I now know that when I’m emotionally “out of whack” it means in some aspect of my life I’ve not been true to myself and I have to do what can be terribly scary – face that truth and then do something about it.

Taped to one wall of my office is a snippet of a blog post by my SOBCon Mastermind Team Member Steve Farber entitled, “The Extreme Leader’s Mantra” that reminds me to:

  • Do what I love
  • In the service of people
  • Who love what I do

I’ve come to realize that honoring myself and being true to myself absolutely includes all three aspects of this mantra.

Ideas and initiatives borne of love and passion bestowed upon unappreciative or uninterested teams, boards or clients lose their luster and suck the life out of me.  They become “unpowered” rather than “empowered” visions.  The same goes with working in the service of others I respect and admire but on initiatives for which I have no passion.

So even though in such cases I still might be proceeding toward my higher vision, I’ve derailed in the most significant way – by not following the path to my vision that aligns with who I really am.

Steve Woodruff and I and the #LeadershipChat Community will be talking about the importance of vision in leadership tomorrow night on Twitter at 8:00 pm Eastern Time for the first #LeadershipChat of 2011.  As you think about vision and how you use, create and articulate it as a leader, I encourage you to ask yourself if you do anything subconsciously to derail your own efforts to bring your business and personal visions to life.

If you believe you just might do so, then chances are it all goes back to not being true to yourself – to your values, needs, desires and your own personal brand of fuel.

Be true to yourself in 2011 – genuinely empower your vision – and you’ll experience new heights of success!

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And please join me and Mack Collier this Wednesday, January 5th at 3:00 pm Eastern Time for a FREE MarktingProfs Social Media Virtual Conference presentation entitled, “The 3 C’s of Profitable Business Blogging.“  We’d love to see you there where we’ll share our business blogging secrets…

Photo is the Apollo 11 Launch by NASA on The Commons.