Love demands not that you think less of yourself,
but that you think of yourself less.
--- Anthony Silard
Life is a process of displacement. When you are born, you immediately become #1. As long as you are single, you remain #1—it’s still about you and your freedom.
When you get married, you become #2—you have to learn to put your spouse first (without compromising your deeply-held values—that’s why choosing the right person is the most important decision you’ll ever make in your life) if you want the marriage to work.
When you have a child, you become #3. By the time you become a grandparent, you’re lucky if you’re still in the Top Ten.
While this sounds like a self-defeating prospect, it’s the opposite: you gain tremendously by having people in your life who build their lives around you and support and love you.
While it sounds like you become weaker, it’s the opposite: you become stronger. While it sounds like you become a follower, it’s again the opposite: this is true leadership. The front-stage star is not a leader, but a showman—not the director, but an actor.
The true leader is the one you don’t see, the back-stage architect whose undying devotion enables the unfolding drama, which involves many, to captivate and enthrall, night after night.
Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).