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The Heart Of A Leader

Many people define leadership as being in charge of a group or an organization. In both of my years of leadership class, I have learned that there is so much more to leadership than just being in charge. Through my first year, not only had I learned so much about myself, others, and the different qualities of leadership, but there was also a passion that began to burn in me.

For me it wasn’t necessarily the guidebook that taught me about my leadership qualities, it was the people around me. These people taught me how to lead others in different ways. My friend Morgan has shown me what it means to be a good person, she has also taught me how to set a good example and to have faith in what will come. She is the one who had brought my aspiration for leadership to life. Her ways of leadership are very quiet, but she has helped me walk through my journey of finding what I truly love. Leonard Ravenhill once said, “A true shepherd leads the way. He does not merely point the way.”

When we started doing projects in first year leadership, it brought different qualities up in each individual. Although it is Mrs. Weddle's job to step up and get things done, I loved to see how much she influenced everyone of us throughout each and every task. She is consistent in treating all of her students with respect and pushing them past their personal expectations. Mrs. Weddle, like Morgan, is also an individual who has faith in her peers. I have grown to believe that the greatest and most accomplished leaders have just as much confidence in the people around them as they do themselves.

Growing up, I learned it shouldn't have to take someone noticing you in order to want to accomplish something.I have observed that many people only step up and take pride in something when they want something out of it. My dad taught my sister and I to always be the first person to step up and to always take pride in things, even if no one notices. I full heartedly believe that having that mind set will set you up for a very accomplished life. I was able to witness an example of someone stepping up just like my dad had taught us to.

As a leadership student I was elected to be an ambassador at the CASB conference in Colorado Springs. Here, many teenage leaders from around Colorado gathered to take action in our problems in schools. Throughout the conference I had noticed there were students from a deaf and blind school. Their translator helped those students get around and communicate with the other students. The woman translating for them flat out inspired me. When I had finally got the nerve to go and talk to her about how she got the privilege to be in that line of work, she had told me that she had volunteered to stay with these students because the teacher had been sick. She said that she lives to see those kids smiling and would do whatever it took to help them have equal opportunities. Her passion inspired me to change my outlook on each day work hard, and help those in need.

Since then, I have realized that I look for opportunities where I can help others, just for the sake of giving them hope. My biggest goal in life is to teach kids that they are more than what they come from. It doesn't matter what part of town they live in or how much money their family has. What truly matters is how they build from personal experience. Maybe if it is just sitting next to a person who is all alone at the lunch table. We can all relate in some way, and I think that letting those similarities be a strong link can change someone's life. There's a quote by Gandhi that says “be the change you wish to see in this world”.This quote is a simple reminder that anyone can make a difference.

As a leader, I hope to continue not only helping others, but to also help start and lead organizations to accomplish my goals. There is much more to the word leadership than taking charge. It’s more about being able to put yourself in someone else’s shoes and understanding how to help them understand, that they too, are able to guide others.

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