Photo by Nareeta Martin on UnsplashThe
first half of 2020 hasn’t been what anyone expected. In fact, the challenges of
the past few months have left many people wondering if the world will ever
break free from this season of hardship. There are signs that things are
getting better, but many people remain skeptical about the future and whether
or not things will be better.

Leaders,
I want to ask you a vital question: do you believe you have the competence, confidence
and ability to sustain this difficult time and to have a more brilliant future
than anything you’ve experienced in the past?

Despite
our current financial realities, our leadership team here at the John Maxwell
Enterprise is resolved that we are going after a more brilliant future with
more zest than we ever have before.

So
many leaders have asked me over the last three months, “Where do I even begin
in planning for the future?” For now, I have two prevailing answers.

1.
Stop comparing.

Comparison
is going to impede your health. Comparison is going to stall your growth. Comparison
is going to cripple your team. So stop comparing!

Yes,
I mean stop comparing yourself to others; but I also mean stop comparing
yourself to yourself! Your goals for 2020 should not exist right now. It’s not
going to happen. Don’t compare yourself to those goals. Write new goals. Last
year’s performance is history.

Stop
comparing yourself to others. So, the business down the street got more from
the government stimulus plan? Who cares!? Forget about it. The longer you spend
looking at what they have instead of managing what you have, the more you will
paralyze yourself and your team.

Quit
playing the comparison game and take control of the future of your business.

Your
propensity to familiar and comfortable leadership is causing you to wait for
the world to return to normal. Game-changer alert: the
world is not returning to normal.

It’s
a waste of time to pick up the pieces and try to put the same box back
together. Go envision a new box. The box that worked yesterday will not work
tomorrow. How do I know? The global impact is too extensive, and the long-term
ramifications will be too violent.

Your
ability to quit comparing today or tomorrow to “normal yesterday” or “normal
a year ago” is going to be a difference maker for you as we blaze our way
into the future.

2.
Get serious about your intentional think time.

The
need for serenity is amplified when the world around you is chaotic. Find a
time and place where you can break away from the storm and get centered so that
you can build and dream.

Planning
for the future must take place in serenity, not on the height of an emotional
wave that could come crashing down with the next news report. And it certainly
shouldn’t come from a place of desperation where you’re in a hurry to do
something. Nope! You will not come up with good plans there.

You
need to settle yourself.

You
need to remove the emotionalism.

You
need to limit the chaos of distraction.

You
need to silence the voices.

Then,
you need to reach deep into the vision and purpose that is already inside you.
That is where you will begin to envision what the future will look like.

For some, the notion of shaping a new future is terrifying—they’d rather hold on to the past. But leaders, this is our opportunity to not only shape a new future but create that future to our specifications. All we have to do is let go of yesterday and dream about what tomorrow can be.

The future is ours. Let’s lead!