Posts Tagged ‘money


the discipline of self-management

Photo credit - //“Great leaders are great managers-not just managers of projects or other people but mostly of themselves.”

Self management is the second discipline of extraordinary spiritual leaders that author Reggie McNeal addresses in his book Practicing Greatness.

McNeal catalogues some particularly problematic emotions (e.g., anger, hostility, fear, bitterness) that a leader needs to manage, rather than be managed by.  His section on “Grief and Loss” caught my attention. I am working through a vocational change and a ‘death of a vision’.  I thought that an acceptable approach would be to replace what was lost with something new.  The author cautions against such a simplistic approach and advises that appropriate grieving involves expression, reflection and processing in community.

Managing expectations is also part of healthy self-management.  In talking about the expectations others have for a leader, McNeal says, “A leader who shapes expectations remains healthier than one who is primarily shaped by them.”  He is not calling for leaders to be completely unmoved by the expectations of others, but over the long haul a leader should be influencing people’s expectations in a way that is in line with the organization’s goals and the leader’s personal strengths and convictions.

Self management also includes staying healthy in body, mind and soul.  The author covers some expected health tips but surprised me when he advocated carving out and protecting time to muse about items bigger than the daily to-do list.  I recognize that the urgent and the mundane often misplace the strategic and the creative.  The author fills this section out by urging leaders to avoid negative people, disorganization, second guessing past decisions and environments that tempt us.

McNeal concludes this chapter identifying two things that if left unmanaged by the leader could sabotage his effectiveness.  The first is his mood and outlook; a positive and upbeat mood will have a positive ripple affect, whereas pessimism and anxiety will lead to negative repercussions.  The second is money; mismanagement of personal assets tarnishes and impedes a leader’s ability to manage the assets of others.

Previous posts in this series.


Re-engagement with the one I love

// crowds were chanting, waving their placards, condemning cruise missiles and the government for sanctioning their development. I was 22, I didn’t know what I thought about cruise missiles, but my mind was clear about their demonstration; it I was most definitely against. At that moment of my life, in that place, I was against any and all forms of free speech that would detract from the business at hand. Much planning had gone into that moment. Prayer, money, time and energy had all been expended to make that moment just right. And now the chanting and the waving were messing with the mood. Could they not call the politicians to account on another day? Did it have to be today? Did it have to be as I was about to propose? Alright, alright keep yelling, we’ll move, but somehow, someway I am going to ask her to marry me.

Twenty five years ago on Feb. 12 I was engaged to the woman that became my wife. It is easy to remember the story, it is harder to remember that I still need to be “engaged”. My marriage is not going to be all it could be, or should be, if I disengage from my bride. I still need to be expending time, money, energy and prayer so that there is yet moments of romance in my marriage. The crowds have changed, but the distracting chanting and waving still remains. Alright so be it, but somehow I will find a way to romance my bride!


This blog is a place to wrestle with loving, leading and labouring according to the Jesus Way.


Blog Stats

  • 53,445 hits