Today Prepares You For Tomorrow – Leadership & Life

by Sherry Riter in preparation,Self-Development  

ancient clay engraved oil lamp

What are you doing with the 86,400 seconds in your day? Oh, you think it is ridiculous to break it down into seconds.

Alright. What are you doing with the 1,440 minutes in your day? Okay. You still think it is silly to break it down by the minute.

Let’s do it like this…You probably spend about 8 to 10 hours a day at the office and commuting to and from the office. If you are a stay-at-home mother or father, you probably spend those 8 to 10 hours working on keeping your home running smoothly and spending time with your children. You probably sleep for 8 hours or at least it is better for your health if you sleep that long. That leaves about 6 hours unaccounted for in your day. What do you do with the 6 hours a day AND how are living the other 18 hours?

As Alyssa sat down on the couch making a list and informing me that she has her paperwork all filed, it once again became apparent that what I have taught my daughter during the past nineteen years molded her into the person she is today. I turned around laughing as I looked at her and said, “And to think you used to say, ‘I’m NOTHING like you!’ and yet every day that passes you are more and more like me.” She rolled her eyes and went back to writing on her paper.

Parenting throws a person into the role of being a leader. Think about it. Who wakes up parents in the morning and says, “Feed your children. Brush their hair. Clean their teeth. Wash the laundry. Cook nutritious meals. Vacuum the house. Pay the bills. Get gas. Go to work.” and a million other things? No one tells a parent what to do each day.

Every action we take is reflected in our children albeit good or not so good. A good parent wants their children to grow and flourish into a bright future filled with success, love and happiness. Parents guide their children so that the experiences will enrich them and uncover their talents. In other words, parents are leaders. Some parents have better leadership skills than others, but they are still leading.

Today And Tomorrow

How do you become the person you desire to be? How do you become a better leader?

The most visual example I know of to illustrate my point is one of the most well known parables of Jesus Christ and it goes something like this…

There were ten virgins that took their lamps to go meet the bridegroom. Five of the virgins took oil with them and five foolish virgins only took their lamps with the oil that was already in the lamp. Well, the bridegroom took an extra long time to arrive, so the virgins slept while they waited for him. At midnight the bridegroom was on his way, so the virgins woke up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish virgins had no oil in their lamps and wanted the wise virgins to give them oil. The wise virgins told the foolish virgins to go buy oil because if they gave the foolish virgins oil, they wouldn’t have enough for themselves. The foolish virgins left to buy oil and while they were gone, the bridegroom arrived. The wise virgins with their oil filled lamps went in with him to be married and the door was locked. When the foolish virgins finally arrived, the bridegroom would not let them enter.

In light of that story, I will ask again…

How do you become the person you desire to be? How do you become a better leader?

First and foremost you must prepare. Yes, preparation is vital in becoming an influential leader. Not only must you prepare the physical aspects of your life, like the oil lamps, but your attitude and mindset must be that of a leader. You must think like a leader, act like a leader and make decisions like a leader even before you are leading anyone.

It is futile to live for the day when you’re “going to make it big.” If you don’t prepare for your future “bigness” now, there isn’t going to be a “big” in your life. Today you have to start acquiring the skills, developing habits and exhibiting the attitude of a leader and person that is passionate about living.

Leaders enjoy living and the experience of life. A leader enjoys the steps leading to the big moments in life as much or more than the big moment. In order to be a successful leader of employees, students, people, family members or yourself, it all starts with the preparations you make right now.

Like I asked earlier, what are you doing with the 86,400 seconds in your day? It really does matter what you spend your time thinking about and doing. Everything you say. Everything you do. Everything you think. Everything shapes you into who you will be and what goals you will accomplish because today prepares you for tomorrow. Think about it…What kind of leader are you becoming and where are you leading your life?


This post was written by...

Sherry Riter is also known as The Redhead Riter. Sherry is witty, intelligent and addictive as she writes about cooking, family, marriage, failures, blogging tips, art, humor, inspiration, travel, PTSD and aging. Her goal is to inspire, motivate, educate and to make her audience laugh. Sherry embraces being a redhead and helps others to see the redhead point of view…"In some eras redheads were worshipped while others thought us witches. Personally, I like the former and think every day is 'Love a redhead day!'" She can also be found on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, StumbleUpon, Linkedin, tweeting as @TheRedheadRiter and you can subscribe to her free blog feed.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Skip_D August 8, 2012 at 6:58 am

At this stage in my life, having lived as long as I have, & having never had children, I look at this post differently than most people will, but it still is sobering to recognize how important one’s actions are as preparation for future responsibilities. Of course, it makes me also ponder how different it would be if life had given us two buttons – rewind & erase. We don’t have those buttons, which makes it so important to use the controls that we do have – review & alter course.


2 The Redhead Riter August 9, 2012 at 12:51 am

Boy, wouldn’t those buttons be nice, Skip. I think I would use “rewind and erase” often.


3 Susanne August 8, 2012 at 7:03 am

I’m obsessive enough with my list for the week diligently prepared every Sunday morning. Every day planned. Ever goal listed. Every day tracked. At the end of the week, After assessing the check marks, the circled items and and the black lines, I start all over again. It must be Sunday. This ritual begs to ask the question, what if one night I go to sleep and never wake up again, what will it matter? Will I be remembered for my list(s)? No wonder I feel so stressed out. How to make me a better leader? Ease up a little on myself, so that maybe I’ll allow myself a little “unplanned” time. Maybe I’ll finally learn to feel a bit of freedom that will allow me to become more creative. That’s when I might actually do something that will indeed make me a better leader. Maybe I’ll even have fun. To be honest, at 52, my definition of “accomplish” is very different than I did at 32. I’m not sure that my list reflects that transition. We’re always pushing and assessing…no wonder we’re tense and doubting ourselves. Under each day, my list should start with the following: Try your best! It’s that simple. Have a happy day!


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