Having a continuous learning mindset is one of the primary personal traits of high-achievers and great leaders. Being open to learning new things shows humility, and that you don’t know it all. And although this is not guaranteed, it often leads to a positive mindset and optimism since the status quo keeps getting challenged and the world of possibility keeps getting expanded. It is one of the great biblical truths that man has generally accepted, and can in no way refute. But it is also one of the most overlooked and undervalued areas of focus as in our lives.
Image courtesy of: Gael Varoquaux
“Do not deceive yourselves. If any of you think you are wise by the standards of this age, you should become ‘fools’ so that you may become wise.” – 1 Corinthians 3:18
Too many of us suffer from what I would call “destination disease”, and the “success syndrome”. This disease hits us when we see accomplishment, we’ve achieved a goal of some kind, and then we stop learning and growing. The problem with that is there are only 2 stages of life. We are either in the growth stage, or we are in the decay stage. If we are not growing, then we are actually decaying.
Especially today as the rate of change continues to increase at a rate faster than ever in the history of the world due to technology, our ability to learn and grow, adjust to change, and continually improve is one of the most valuable traits that we can nurture. Too many times in life I have seen people of great success and achievement stop learning and growing, which begins their decline and that leads to their ultimate failure. They never see it coming.
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It’s really hard to see happening because it happens on the inside of us. Leaders often talk a good game, but in reality they are not open to outside feedback. And it becomes increasingly difficult for them because they actually do know a lot. What they have learned to date is often what led them to the level of success that they are at. But unless they are the type of person that maintains a mindset of humility and is dedicated to continuous learning and growth, their decay begins and their demise is inevitable.
How do we know and test what is happening on the inside of us? Good question. When we are a leader or person in authority, too often people will not give us the necessary feedback and coaching that we need. So we have to seek it, and we can’t accept the answer that we have nothing that we can improve on. We have to ensure that we draw out of people what they are afraid or hesitant to provide. It isn’t easy, but it is critical. This feedback is going to help expose areas of improvement that often are our blind spots. These blind spots are very difficult to reveal but the very thing that lead to breakthrough.
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So once we’ve received feedback, how do we know that it is any good? This part is actually the easiest if we rely on God’s Word. When we receive feedback, we need to make sure that it is from God and intended for good. Too many are out there to deceive us. Too many are only out there for themselves. There is even a book called the “At of War’ that outlines somewhat disturbing tactics and manipulations to guide others to obtain power and authority. But even books have good and bad information in them.
Whether it is advice from people that we know, or from people who we don’t know but are identified as “experts” in the field, no person contains wisdom that is above God’s wisdom. 1 Corinthians 1:25 teaches us that “For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.”
So let us continually maintain an open mind that is seeking ways to continually learn, improve, and grow. And let the source of our growth be directed by the Word of God. For God’s Word is the cornerstone by which all things are built upon, the one thing that never fails. And when we trust God above man to guide us, “the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – (in Philippians 4:7).
Dear heavenly Father, thank you for your Word today. We come to first each and every day and seek your counsel, seek you heart, and seek your face. Help us to be diligent in bounding all of our decisions against your Word. For we know that your Word and your love for us never fails. We thank you for all that you have done for us, and all that you are doing now and in the future on our behalf. Help us to surrender to you Lord, and to fully trust in You. We thank you now, in both the good times and in the bad, knowing that you are always with us Lord, and always at work even if we cannot see it. We know that your ways are higher than our ways Lord, and we put our trust in You alone. Direct our steps, our thoughts, and our words. Help us to love those who are not walking in love Lord, and who seek to harm us. We give you all the honor and glory, in Jesus mighty name. Amen.
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Photo By Gael Varoquaux
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