Recently, I started thinking about ethics and leadership. Maybe it was the New Member Meeting I just led with the same name (funny how those things work out) or maybe it has just been the accumulation of life’s events. Whatever it may be, I have learned that being a leader and doing the right thing is (arguably) infinitely more difficult than to do something wrong.
You see, being a leader takes a lot of work and a lot of self confidence. How easy is it to just turn the other cheek and allow wrongdoings to be done? It is even harder to stand up for your values, especially when you are around your friends and your peers. You do not want to be known as the snitch or the person who is always selling others out.
But for me, I have always considered myself to be highly interested in leadership. Maybe I haven’t always been a leader, but I knew I always wanted to be one, whatever that meant. I have also always been known to be a rule follower. My parents have joked numerous times that I’m an old soul. I specifically remember being in elementary school and kids telling me to do something they “triple dog dared me” (which apparently meant you HAD to) and me replying with “no” because that dare didn’t carry any weight with me. You see, I have always been the type of person who likes to follow the rules and who likes to be known as a leader, but even then it has been really difficult for me to always stand up for what is right, or to do the right thing.
The thing is, at the end of the day, you have to be able to carry out actions that you can live with. I have learned that the wrong decisions or choices I have made have affected me extremely more than the right ones. They always carry heavy on my conscience. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a saint. I don’t want to be known as one. However, I know that in the long run, bad choices are going to affect us and hurt us more.
That is what I think being a leader means… it means not always making the right choices, but knowing when you have messed up. It means admitting that you are wrong and that you are not perfect. It means accepting defeat sometimes, and asking from help from those around you. But the most important thing is that you are proud of yourself and happy with who you are.