If you’re not taking care of yourself, you’re not leading well. Effective leadership starts with leading your own personhood. Your first responsibility is to lead yourself – body and soul. If you do this well, it will overflow into the lives of those you love and lead. It will overflow into the places, seasons, situations, and opportunities of life.

I walked past a good-looking young man the other day. He looked healthy from the inside-out. He displayed a beaming white smile, a skip in his step, and boasted well-crafted shoulders, chest, and arms. He carried in one hand what looked like a carefully blended health drink. He is probably more than thirty years younger than me. Was I jealous? Maybe a little.

I don’t know the young man so I cannot speak to his intellectual development nor his spiritual condition. I cannot speak to his character. But the evidence reveals some positive attributes: discipline and commitment. Yet, I smile to myself remembering what a young body can do. His days of testing have not yet come.

The young man’s appearance is an object lesson. When we speak of leading ourselves, we are not talking about maintenance, we are speaking of training. Training is about getting better. It’s about growing, learning, and challenging ourselves in every way. It’s about being better today than a year ago in every life category possible. Are you in training? Are you physically stronger than you were last year? Have you removed bad patterns by replacing them with healthy habits? What are you studying? How are you maturing? Are you getting better?

Those who train will lead the pack.

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