The Importance Of Being Grounded
In the great book “Disciplines of a Godly Man” author R. Kent Hughes told a story of a meeting of nine of the world’s top financiers back in 1923. The wealth, power and success that was represented in that hotel in Chicago was perhaps the most incredible display of such the world had seen at any one time.
Jump forward twenty-five years later. All of these men died either bankrupt, were imprisoned, or took their life by suicide.
All of their wealth, power, and success gave them no peace within, no meaningful success, no lasting satisfaction.
For leaders to have meaningful influence, lives, and impact there must always be a reason that grounds them. A grounded leader has a deeper purpose, a higher calling, and a broader perspective to their entire lives.
A leader’s grounding source is that which gives full meaning to all areas of their lives, and transcends their thinking, behavior, and worldview. It may be a single solitary source for some, others it may be a number of reasons that intertwine together, creating harmony and peace.
Being grounded keeps a leader authentic, preserves their internal core values, and ensures consistency in their lives over the long haul. These type of leaders are healthier, life longer, have more mental stability, and in turn garner a much more positive influence in the lives of others than those who are not grounded or trust in fleeting, one-dimensional goals and pursuits.
Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton, one of the richest men in America, still lived in his small Arkansas home, drove an old pickup truck, and thought nothing of ringing a register to expedite lines. He never forgot where he came from and knew that setting an example showed his teams the passion for their mission. He stayed grounded in connecting with his people, and being one of them in spite of their employer and leader.
For every Sam Walton that amasses great success and wealth and remains grounded, there are many high school coaches, college professors, doctors, business people, and leaders of all walks that keep themselves grounded and true to their core values over time.
There are a variety of ways for leaders to be grounded, and no two people will be identical. While not a comprehensive list, below are some things to consider in what will keep yourself grounded:
- Service to others
- Living with a clean conscience
- Living to your core values
- Integrity and character
- Exercising and eating right
- Making a positive change in your world
- Solid work ethic
- Enjoyment of life
- Connecting people together
- Taking time off to relax, recharge and refresh
- Building a livelihood for your children
- A love of learning
- A hobby or a passion
- Giving to your church, charitable organization, or just to bless others
- Building an organization that makes others’ lives richer and fuller
- Being part of something bigger than yourself
- Setting an example for subsequent generations to follow
- Developing people and teams of leaders
Staying grounded is what will keep your perspective in difficult times, when you question your goals, It gives you something to strive for when the going gets tough. It prevents you from making shipwreck your influence and dragging others down with you.
Leaders, while you look at your goals in the skies, keep yourselves firmly grounded.
What do you do to keep yourself grounded? Share your thoughts below!