Here’s a secret:
Most leadership content is not new.
Ecclesiastes 1:9 says, “What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.”
Most of the time, when you hear a speaker introduce a “new” leadership concept or read a book about an idea you’ve never heard of before, the content is not really original. What’s being said has always been true, but these speakers and authors have used a new language to communicate it.
As someone who communicates often and is always looking for something new, a fresh way to say something, or a creative example to share, I can confirm that the most impactful leadership concepts are the ones that we’ve been talking about for decades. So today I want to share something that I talked about 15 years ago, but has been resonating with me lately.
It’s a poem often attributed to Mother Teresa. I have known it for a long time, and it’s as true now as it was then.
People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self centered.
Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.
Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies.
If you are honest and sincere, people may deceive you.
Be honest and sincere anyway.
What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight.
If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous.
Be happy anyway.
The good you do today will often be forgotten.
Do good anyway.
Give the best you have, and it will never be enough.
Give your best anyway.
In the final analysis, it is between you and God.
It was never between you and them anyway.
This reminder is as much for me as it is for you today. Even when the results aren’t what they should be, do it anyway.