As adults, we tend to give little thought to the idea of having a role model. Instead we see this to be a quality that adults need to emulate for the children in their lives. However, if you stop and consider who most influences you now, and why, you’ll likely agree that the people you admire and look up to (your role models) are giving you your most important life lessons.
Think about it for a minute. Who do you most admire? A former teacher, a world leader, a neighbor, your boss, your parents, a coach?
High performers learn from other high performers. If you want to manifest a change in your life or achieve a certain goal, the best thing you can do is study and learn from the people who have already done it. One of the most impactful things that high achievers have are powerful role models.
To many ambitious people, this is intuitive. Of course, you want role models. The truth is, most people don’t actively or consciously choose their role models. Learning from other people usually is a much more powerful resource for improving our lives than any book or class. When you find someone who has real world experience in an area of life you want to improve, they can become an endless source of education and motivation to fuel your own self-improvement.
So how do we choose good role models?
1. Brainstorm the list – Who could be a role model for you? Start by asking yourself what you want to achieve or who you want to become. Then ask what skills or traits or values or habits will help you reach your goals. When you determine who you want to become, then you can start putting together the list of people with the qualities you want to develop.
2. Start the search – Search for people, characters, athletes, and celebrities who embody the values, core beliefs, habits, and traits you desire. Find role model matches for the brainstorm questions above.
3. Do the research – Research your potential role models and identify what you can learn from them. How do they live their life? How have they accomplished their goals? What makes them successful?
4. Understand what makes them special – You need to understand the qualities that make your role model special and then decide which of those qualities you want to emulate. By thinking back to this person’s most memorable moments for you, it will tell you what qualities you want to emulate.
5. Why do you admire these qualities – To create any meaningful change in our lives, we have to honestly reflect and understand ourselves on a deeper level. Ask yourself how your life would be different if you emulated a certain quality of your role model. Compare that ideal vision of you with how you are today. Once you can identify the gap, it will help you deconstruct any limitations that have held you back. This is the part so many of us get wrong; we don’t do the deep internal work to understand ourselves. The goal here is to understand your fundamental motivations for emulating your role model.
6. What one or two things can you gain from each person – The goal is not to become a different person, it is to take the best of the people around you and elevate yourself. So only seek to emulate the qualities and character traits that you want in each of your role models. You can pick one role model for work ethic, one for values, another for strategy, and another for social skills. The goal is to use them as a model to understand yourself better and to create real change in your life. Don’t forget learning from role models has can work in reverse too. Learning what NOT to do is often just as important, if not more important, than learning what TO do.
Remember: the next time you notice yourself admiring others you can say, “The fact that I’m noticing this means I can do it too.” Then ask yourself, “What could I do to demonstrate that quality more in my life?”
If you need some help identifying the characteristics you should adopt to grow or the right people to use as role models, let’s connect. You can book a quick complementary chat at www.EmpoweredLeadershipCoach.com/schedule
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