Stay True to Yourself: Avoid the Three Elements of the Compromise Trap

By Belinda Pruyne

If you want to be a leader in your industry or company, you need to be willing to be Unashamedly You and honor all that makes you who you are.
Think about the leaders that inspire you. Are you drawn to them because they do things the way everyone else does?  Being, doing and acting like another?
Or are you drawn to them because they are more committed to taking a stand for all they believe in, rather than focusing on being liked.

Or are you drawing a line in the cement for all that is important to them and are Unashamedly Themselves?

They no longer fall into the "Compromise Trap" of trying to please others by living their definition of a successful or fulfilling life. The Compromise Trap is when we walk away from what we believe to be important in our:

  1. Life:  Fit in, be loved and accepted
  2. Careers:  Get the job, get the promotion and the raise
  3. Companies:  Get the client, make the sale and get the recognition

Where are you compromising; or selling yourself short? Or, when are you not recognizing your full value? What will you need to change to be the leader that you not only desire, but are here to be?

For some of you, it will be:

  • Stating your opinions in meetings rather than going with the flow.
  • Not taking on the work of another to keep the peace.
  • Stop letting someone else take the lead so as not to ruffle any feathers.
  • Playing small, so those around you won't feel badly.
  • Being more concerned with being respected than liked.
  • Getting clear on all that is important to you, rather than taking a stand.
Take a moment and write down the top five attributes and actions the leaders you admire exhibit. Now look at yourself and how you present yourself to the world. Can you see where you are playing it safe and small? Or, not being true to yourself and the full value that you have to offer?
What are the top three things you can change right now? Start small and give yourself "little wins."  Then, build your confidence and go from there.
Remember, Rome wasn't built in a day.  Neither will your leadership presence.  But it can be built from consistent, clear action. So, be Unashamedly You. As Zayn Malik said, "Stay your true self and never sacrifice who you are for anyone." You will find your unique path to becoming the leader the world is waiting for.

Belinda Pruyne, founder and CEO, The Business Innovation Group, which is dedicated to helping leaders and improving their work environments.
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