With Nelson Mandela’s recent departure from this planet, I’ve been really connected to what’s possible in the realm of world change. As an Anti-Apartheid revolutionary, he changed the way history would have been through his philanthropic and political efforts. He was ONE man, had ONE life, and changed the lives of MILLIONS of people.
He was what many of us would call “a leader”. What was it that made him a leader? What was it that made him one of the most iconic beacons to ever shine on this planet? When you look up the word “leader” in the dictionary, it looks a little something like this:
My definition of “leader” looks a bit different than that, and in my own personal dictionary I’d put a picture of Mandela’s face as the most perfect example. He had a committed vision, and he stood unwaveringly for what was “right” in his heart. In the TWENTY SEVEN YEARS (can you even FATHOM that?!) that he was imprisoned, he never lost sight of his purpose. His critics called him a terrorist and a Communist because he called for equality, but he didn’t let that deter him. His faith remained strong and his persistence overcame the resistance of his adversaries.
The aforementioned accomplishments would deem many as a leader, but what truly made him magnificent was that he nurtured more leaders to carry on his legacy. He didn’t collect the fame and the riches and run for the hills by himself. He climbed the mountain of endless challenges WITH his family, his people, and his global community and he taught them all how to FLY on their own.
He led by example.
He didn’t let his circumstances destroy his mission.
It’s leaders like Mandela who don’t sell out on their dreams. If he had lost faith while being locked up, we never would’ve heard about him. When we play small, we halt our life’s work. When we align ourselves with our birth-given purpose, we show up like the leaders we were meant to be.
We, as The Collective, are getting closer to coming together as One Love. Every day, more people are born into the role of leadership and it’s their creation of more leaders that will continue the ripple effect. There are a lot of people who want to make a long lasting difference in this world, I being one of them, but a leader walking with no one following is just a person on a stroll.
As true leaders, we get to connect, be vulnerable, and KNOW that there is enough leadership to go around.
Over the last 4 months, with 7 other powerful leaders, I coached a team of 38 magnificent human beings into their greatness. We guided them through the trenches of impossibilities, circumstances, and excuses and then led them into the capacity of being leaders of their own lives. Never once did we sell out on them.
We saw them as the beautiful masterpieces they were born to be and empowered the whole team to change the world around them. Through community service projects and paying it forward, they learned how to create something from nothing in all avenues of their existence.
Their efforts inspired hundreds of other people to carry on their legacy and create even more leaders. This elevated their lives in every imaginable way, and now their dreams are their reality. We can have nice thoughts about making a difference but choose to play it safe, or we can have nice thoughts about making a difference AND allow ourselves to mess up, fall down, get messy and look like we don’t know what we’re doing.
Leaders do WHATEVER it takes to create and carry on their legacy, and we can’t have a sustainable legacy without the support of other leaders.
What are you doing today that will bring you closer to living your dreams as a leader? I wanna hear about it in the comments section below! I love hearing from you!
Love all that is you,
Jenna Phillips is a Total Wellness Philosopher, Certified Holistic Lifestyle Coach, AFAA Certified Personal Trainer & the founder of her lifestyle brand I’m On A Mission. Follow her on Twitter and visit I’m On A Mission and be inspired.