“Nobody cares about your struggle. They care about the impact of your struggle on them”
I posted the above on my daily social media assault timeline to mixed reviews and interpretations. I primarily speak to people in leadership positions and entrepreneurial roles. Put the above into that context.
When I say “Nobody cares about your struggle.” I truly do believe that. I am not saying people are cold or uncaring. It comes down to survival, we do what we do to survive our own struggle. We have to take care of ourselves so we have something available to offer others. From a purely leadership perspective, you are in no position to request that anyone care about your struggle. You assumed the lead role, which requires a selfless approach to achieving results. It is your job to care about the struggles and needs of those you lead. Your success solving needs and providing value should be enough to overcome your own obstacles and provide personal satisfaction.
“They care about the impact of your struggle on them” This is where the truth of it all is found. No matter what you think or want to think, no healthy and productive person is tearing themselves down to focus on your issues. Some will focus on your struggle to distract from their own, which is not healthy and ultimately, self destructive. These people are not leaders or on a positive path. The real balance is found once you understand that you have to provide a value to people that you are seeking help from.
Struggle has value as long as it is a progressive process. If you are stuck in the struggle and asking for people to lower themselves to come hang out in your misery, you are selfish and not worth any investment. If you are truly committed to a better path, you won’t have to ask for help and your struggle will make you plus anyone who participates, stronger and better for the effort.
I can expand this quote a bit to say; No person on a progressive path cares about your struggle. They care that participating in your struggle helps everyone achieve better results, including their own.
A good friend went to Haiti after the last hurricane to help with the devastation. He went because he wanted to help but he also feels that everything he does for these people pays him back in much greater ways. He almost feels guilty because of how good doing good makes him feel. This is a great example of what I am speaking to. You do for others because you care, but you also do for others because of how fulfilling it is. Being selfless can almost feel selfish when you give what you have to those that have not. By lifting others, we always lift ourselves.
You can be shallow and read what I wrote from a negative perspective, or you can put it in context and give it a chance to speak to a larger truth. We help those in ways that also helps ourselves. There is nothing negative about this, this is the balance that allows for us to make progress as humans. If we all put our energies into the struggles of others with no benefit, we would de-evolve.
Progress is struggle but the struggle has to bear results that move us forward.
Again, from a pure leadership perspective; you are not a leader when you use people to fulfill your own needs without equal or greater than results for those you lead. Leadership is about giving, not taking. You achieve the objective in a way that provides value to all involved or you steal the efforts of others for your own benefit. Nothing you have done or provided in the past can justify your stealing of efforts. Your value must be current if you want to maintain a sound and ethical position to lead from.