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A Leadership Handbook for Anyone Who Aspires to Be a Great Leader

A Leadership Handbook for Anyone Who Aspires to Be a Great Leader
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Every day you hear about it: Why some leaders are better than others? Why some are bosses while others are leaders? How to become a good leader? What are the qualities of a leader? From world leaders to team leaders at work, leadership seems to be something that can’t be detached from our lives. But why is that and what really makes up an incredible leader?

The Necessity of Leadership

If We’re All Talented People, Why Do We Still Need a Leader?

From ancient times to in the information age these days, to survive, human beings needed an organized way to settle and grow. Such organization was necessary to maintain control and protect our settlements.

True Leadership Enables People to Work Toward the Same Goal Together.

With a good leader, people are motivated to grow and will perform their best to reach the goal.

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The Impact of Leadership

How Becoming a Manager Is Different From Becoming a Leader

Managing and leading is different. With a great leadership, people are happier and more productive. Yet with a poor leadership, people have low morale and are likely to fail to achieve their goals.

Why It Is Wrong to Glorify a Leader and Belittle a Follower

It is not correct to have the pervasive notion that being good at following others is a negative trait. Even though it is important to have a leader, it doesn’t make it less important to have followers. Simply put, leaders don’t exist without followers.

How to Become a Truly Great Leader

What Separates a Leader from a Boss

10 Differences Between A Boss And A Real Leader

It takes more than just bossing people around to be a leader.

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Why Everyone Loves the Leader Instead of the Boss

A happy and motivated team comes from their leader’s positive attitude. Even in the worst situations such as experiencing low team morale or facing a failure, a great leader stays positive and figure out ways to keep the team motivated to solve the problems together.

10 Signs of A Charismatic Leader

It’s imperative for a leader to have a sense of humor, particularly when things go wrong. Being approachable is an important quality for a leader because no one wants to work with an arrogant person who is not opened for communication.

How Leadership is Related to Personality Types

No Matter What Your Personality Is, You Have the Potential to Lead

When it comes to leadership, it really doesn’t matter what personality type you are. Whether you’re an introvert, extrovert or ambivert, becoming a leader is more about the skills and attitude.

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This is Why Introverts Can Be Good Leaders

In the past, extroverted people seemed to have a higher chance to become a leader. But obviously these days, we witness success achieved by many introverted leaders such as Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and Larry Page.

How to Develop a Unique Leading Style

What Is Your Leadership Style And How To Become A Charismatic Leader

All great leaders excel a unique leading style. They are all charismatic for a different reason. While each leading style has its strengths and weaknesses, great leaders can strike a balance when leading the team in different situations.

Why Faking Another Leadership Style Is Doomed to Fail

Great leaders stay true to themselves without faking another leading style because they understand that no leadership is perfect. What they can control to make things better is amplifying their strengths.

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Good Reads to Consider on Leadership

15 Best Leadership Books Every Young Leader Needs To Read

This list of the 15 best leadership books will inform and inspire all aspiring leaders.

10 Books You Must Read to Strengthen Your Leadership Skills

If you are determined to better your leadership skills, add these 10 books to your reading list.

Featured photo credit: Flaticon via flaticon.com

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More by this author

Anna Chui

Anna is the Chief Editor and Content Strategist of Lifehack. She's also a communication expert who shares tips on motivation and relationships.

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Last Updated on July 21, 2021

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

How to Make a Reminder Works for You

Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

More on Building Habits

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Reference

[1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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