The Best Leaders Are Inspired People

Dr. Purushothaman
December 17, 2013


Seek Your Own Inspiration Before Inspiring Others

I love my Life today. Because I own my own business, and can work when and where I want, I am able to jump in the car and roll down to Oklahoma to spend a few days with my 94-year-old Granny. And I'm reminded that inspiration is all around me, every day, if I'll only open my eyes and look for it.

Granny herself is an amazing inspiration. I guess you can be inspired by anyone who makes it to 94, but Granny did it over some harsh adversity and still has all her marbles. And I'm related to her! That inspires me, big-time... I might just make it to 94 with all my marbles, too, and that is a goal worth striving for!

The drive down to see her is always inspiring, too. Today it's a bright, sunny day, and my route takes me through some pretty country where small-town Americans are out on their farm equipment (and even on their horses), working their own American dreams - driven to varying degrees by their own inspirations.

Even the natural scenery is inspiring. Look on a map, and you might not think the route looks all that exciting - and I'll admit it's not the same as driving through the mountains, or through the canyon country a little farther west. But I know something you probably don't: there's some modest but beautiful canyon country between La Junta and Kim, Colorado that few motorists get to enjoy. And the rolling hills and wide-open spaces of southern Colorado, the panhandles of Oklahoma and Texas, and western Oklahoma are both serene and inspiring at once.

My trip today is a journey of a little more than 500 miles. Most people would hop on an airplane... and I don't blame them. Long-distance driving isn't for everyone. But I love it. It inspires me. And even if I were flying, I'd choose a window seat, because there are few things as inspiring as the view of ANY place on Planet Earth from 30,000 feet.

I probably have some crucial conversations coming up at some point today with folks I'm coaching... a couple of them are struggling to find their way, as leaders, or even as people. They want to inspire others, but in some cases, they lack inspiration themselves. I'll tell them that in all cases, inspirational leaders are inspired people. You can be told what to do by anyone who wears a suit or has the word "manager" on her nameplate... but you can only be inspired by an inspired person.

So work to spot the inspirations, great and small, in your own life. They're all around you. And here's another thing I'll tell my clients, and you: I believe your Life wants to be inspired. You are meant to be excited, happy, and full of the joy of your life. So don't just focus on the miles you have to go; rejoice in the miles behind you, and enjoy the moment you're in.

As you read this, I'm likely approaching another little farming town. I'll be seeking inspiration from it. And if I blink, I'll miss it.

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