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The Leadership Principle of


“You are a poor specimen if you can't stand the pressure of adversity.” Proverbs 24:10
By John E. Schrock, Businessman
Underline the key concepts found in this principle.

There is a difference in being under pressure and experiencing stress, yet, in many ways, they are similar. Stress comes from having an overload or being trapped or pushed into a corner; it's when we cannot see the end of the tunnel, but can't go back either. Sometimes in business, we start something that may not work, but the consequences of quitting are greater than that of going ahead. That creates stress. It can kill us. On the other hand, pressure is more of a choice. In sports, we push ourselves. In business we make too many appointments and try to accomplish too many things at once. Pressure is usually self-inflicted. We would not have to play or work that hard, but we choose to by setting too many goals or wanting to win too much. In the end, pressure may turn into stress, but in many of these situations we can readjust our goals and even use a back door out of pressure situations if we want to. Pro-active leaders are identified by these traits:

1. They have vision.

2. They have desire.

3. They thrive on challenge.

So, if you want to be a good leader, you must learn to live with pressure. There are two types of leaders: one is proactive, and the other is reactive. They both face pressure. The proactive leader looks ahead to see what is coming and puts pressure on himself and others to achieve their goals or avoid a disaster. The reactive leader, on the other hand, reacts to the disaster after it has happened, causing him pressure or even stress.

Proactive leaders cut a path for others to follow. They are driven by a vision of what needs to be done. To them, getting it done is more important than the cost or pressure it will take in achieving their goal. They will handle problems that others fear and avoid. Some of their friends will laugh at them and say it cannot be done. But these leaders see into the future: they see things as they should be - or could be - and strive to bring them about. They dare to do what others won't do. They will run when others quit, work while others play, and walk where others fear. They live under constant pressure by choice. They could slow down, reschedule, or set lower goals, but they want to be achievers. They thrive on living under pressure.

No one is a born leader. Most of us have the potential, but only a few will pay the price or live under the pressure. Good leaders take risks, causing pressure: they are willing to handle the problems which are in the way of their goals or destiny. They are driven by desire and see problems as hurdles, not walls. To them life is a game of overcoming, and pressure is accepted as part of winning. They get so used to it that life doesn't seems right without it. They know that without a challenge there is no achievement, and without pressure there is no progress.

Let's pray to have good leaders who can handle the pressure and solve the problems - both now and in the future - leaders who will dare to challenge the status quo, and dare to stand as pillars of truth in our communities and our world, leaders that have dreams that can be fulfilled and are not afraid of the pressure.

This principle is part of the one year character development program: Foundations For Achievement.
Thoughts to Ponder:
Funny thing about ideas: they never work unless you do.
Evaluate yourself
from 1 to 10
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Why did you give yourself this
What benefits will you obtain by
raising your rating?
What specific action can you put
into practice to test the benefits of
this principle?