Are You a Martyr?

reluctant-nudge1I found this short article fascinating:

In a recent article in Inc. Magazine, Les McKeown shares these thoughts:

3 Signs That You’re a Martyr, Not a Leader

#1)  You’re a Bottleneck… and you secretly like it!

Martyr-leaders have unfulfillable commitments, impossibly Herculean to-do lists, and triple-booked schedules – all for the purpose of generating the warm, comforting glow of indispensability.

#2)  Your Default Mood is Self-Pity

Watch a martyr-leader as he goes about his daily business, and you will find two primary attitudes on display:  poor me and head-shaking sigh.

#3)  You Exude Learned Helplessness

Martyr-leaders live in a self-taught state of mind wherein nothing is ever truly fixable and everything is a mess – and expect the rest of us to feel the same.

This is Russ writing again…

I looked up the word “martyr”, and one of the definitions is the following:  “A person who displays or exaggerates their discomfort or distress in order to obtain sympathy or admiration”.

Do you know leaders like this?  Are you one of them?

I think at times I have used “martyr-like” words and actions in my leadership…

*When I feel overwhelmed, I want others to identify with me or at least know that I’m struggling

*When asked how I am, and I respond, “I’m really busy”.  This is more of a statement of being unorganized then of good leadership.

*Yes, I have exaggerated at least once or twice in my leadership, looking for either sympathy or for people’s worship.

I don’t want to be a martyr-leader.  Do you?

There’s a big difference between being a leader that shares needs or asks for help and being a leader that uses guilt to manipulate people’s feelings and people’s dependence.  This is a sign of a “Reluctant Leader”:  A leader that has the tools to lead, but just won’t take the ownership and responsibility to make it happen.

Are you a martyr-leader?

Are you doing any of the 3 things the article talks about above?

What can you do TODAY to change that? 

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