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Sweeping the Floor

Sweeping the Floor

Most of us are uncomfortable with self-examination. It is no easy task to go head to head with becoming a better leader. Accepting that improvement is essential and then opening your leadership skills up to scrutiny and criticism isn’t easy. It’s easier to do just about anything else — in fact, some of the world’s most significant accomplishments are a result of deep self-examination and the changes that flow from it.

The philosopher Daniele Bolelli once offered a helpful metaphor. He said training yourself to do anything is like sweeping a floor. Just because you have done it once doesn’t mean the floor is clean forever. Every day we have to pick up the broom and sweep again. Every day the dust comes back. You would be stunned by what kind of damage dust and dirt can do over time. You will be horrified at how quickly it builds up.

The same is true for leadership. Your ability to lead, if only yourself, will be your daily battle. Every day for the rest of your life, you will find yourself in one of three places. You will be aspiring, you will be successful, or you will experience failure. You will make leadership mistakes in each phase. There is no doubt of this.

You need to sweep the floor daily and then sweep again tomorrow.