Lodge Leaders Are Like Athletes
John Loayza, Assistant Grand Chancellor
Grand Lodge of Illinois, A.F. & A.M.
Brethren, the 2018 Winter Olympics ended with champions from around the world. In effect, the best of the best in their respective sports activities. Have you asked yourselves, what sets them apart from the others? This sports question can also be applied to our local lodge leaders or officers. Both the athletes and successful local lodge leaders come to the same conclusion, competition is actually a mental game as much as it is a physical one. We all need to learn how to adopt and emulate success in our lodges, as well as in sports. Let’s look at a few of the factors that can turn a sports team or a lodge into champions by considering the following points:
1-Champions & Successful Lodge Leaders Believe In The Future. In order to achieve a goal, athletes and lodge leaders/officers focus on what needs to be achieved and how to achieve the goal. They picture themselves achieving their goals within specific time parameters. Thus, their actions become a matter of when, not if they will achieve their goals.
2-Champions & Successful Lodge Leaders Embrace Conflict. Many people look for a fast escape whenever they encounter an obstacle or conflict. However, champions or successful lodge leaders look for opportunities to break through any obstacles and improve themselves, others, and their lodges.
3-Champions/Lodge Leaders Remain Focused. Successful lodge leaders or champions understand that in order to win it’s necessary to emphasize the fundamentals, continue to make consistent, and incremental improvements.
4-Champions/Lodge Leaders Are Accountable. Athletes have many levels of accountability, such as with their teammates, trainers, and coaches. This is no different within a lodge, district of lodges, and statewide. Therefore, local lodge leaders should be building their own accountability teams to coordinate their best efforts while staying focused on their ultimate goals.
5-Champions/Lodge Leaders Are Risk Takers. There are no guarantees in this world. Therefore, athletes and successful local lodge leaders take calculated risks that can possibly lead them to achieve their goals. However, if they fail, they automatically and carefully analyze what went wrong and they try again.
6-Champions/Lodge Leaders Have Discipline. Although athletes and lodge leaders practice the same exact routines daily with necessary step by step improvements, modifications or innovations, it may seem boring or too challenging to some but they understand the importance of diligence and hard work. This process eventually leads to success.
7-Champions/Lodge Leaders Continually Learn. Athletes are continually studying techniques to improve their abilities, researching their competitors, and searching for information that gives them an edge. They live and breathe their goals and how to achieve them. The most successful lodge leaders do the same thing, and with that learning process there is no obstacle that cannot be overcome.
8-Champions/Lodge Leaders Are Coachable. Anyone thinking that he knows it all is only fooling himself. Every successful athlete has coaches. Moreover, successful athletes know how to accept constructive criticism and suggestions on how to improve. Successful local lodge leaders have the availability of coaches who can help with improvements if those local lodge leaders avail themselves of the resources within their own lodges and from other lodges. Nothing breathes success like success.
9-Champions/Lodge Leaders Concentration. Any successful athlete or lodge leader will tell you that he fully concentrates on the task at hand. He doesn’t let any other personal or work distraction to cause a loss of his concentration in achieving his goal.
10-Champions/Lodge Leaders Dream Big. Any champion or successful lodge leader will tell others that they dare to dream big, and to be the best in the world. They never think small. Therefore, if you want to be a champion athlete or successful local lodge leader, you have to dream big because no one else will.
Hopefully, the aforementioned successful traits, if applied correctly, will change the mental process and make local lodge leader champions around the world.