categories: Uncategorized, communication, development, leadership, personal, relationships
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February 8th, 2010

by Craig Groeschel

13 comments (+ Add)


Someone said, “Perception is reality except for self-perception.” The first part of that statement is debatable, but the second part is unquestionably true. (Anyone who doesn’t believe it only needs to watch the tryouts of American Idol.)

Accurate self-perception is extremely difficult to obtain—especially for successful leaders.

Instead of becoming more aware of weaknesses and vulnerabilities, flourishing leaders can easily become increasingly blinded.

One would think that success draws wise advisors. Unfortunately, the opposite is often true. The higher one rises in any organization, the more likely others will tell them what they want to hear, rather than the truth.

This week we’ll talk about how to become increasingly self-aware so we can grow as leaders and as people.

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  1. Feb 8, 2010 at 7:29 am

    Good subject and I am excited to hear what you have to say. I have know the very thing you talk about to be true. The aspect I know of was a leader who asked around till he found voices that matched what he wanted to do then added them in. He then got rid of the voices of those who disagreed with him in a respectful way.

    Looking farward to what challeges will come my way.

  2. Feb 8, 2010 at 8:16 am


  3. Feb 8, 2010 at 8:42 am

    So True!!! I know anyone who tries to convince all that they live in perfection or have arrived…I inwardly chuckle and move on…

    For example, the couple that brags that they HAVE NEVER had an argument or a disagreement and want ALL to know that they have the perfect marriage…to me is a front of some un-discussed issues.

    or…I had a bible study once and this chick literally said to everyone in the room..I have NO issues with self and esteem, so I am just here for you all with empathy because you all obviously have issues. Really???

    Or the “Kiss Rump..” who agrees like that wife in the movie “Coming to America” (whatever you like) to someone who has perceived power over all and they are given celebrity status…Position does not personally impress me (no man is good..not one…only God). Most people cannot handle worldly praise and God given favor…They get lost in the fame…The Humble Leader should be praised, not the one who tells all that “They are Humble.”

    My Mirror and self- check is the Bible…When I look in that mirror…I will always have a LONG way to go, but I continue to seek and change because I NEED it!

  4. Feb 8, 2010 at 9:12 am

    I had never heard that quote before now but find it true. I don’t watch American Idol because I just don’t but when I walk through and it is on, it is painful. :) But many of them are no different than me in how they feel about themselves. I found arrogance to be a “friend” and I was able to rationalize it by saying, “When you are good at something, you gotta believe in yourself.” I cringe at that today. It is easy to say, “Mirror mirror on the wall” and have it give back a glowing review. Only when we compare ourselves to the King and His Word can we ever get a really good picture of ourselves. I am looking forward to this week Craig.

  5. Feb 8, 2010 at 9:15 am

    I am excited about this. Typically the first thing I do when I turn on my computer is write my blog. This morning I wrote about perception, then I click over here and…needless to say I am pretty stoked…

  6. Feb 8, 2010 at 9:23 am

    This topic is rarely discussed, but desperately needed. I look forward to coming back tomorrow to read more. Maybe these posts will be the making of a future book!

  7. Feb 8, 2010 at 9:39 am

    I regularly pray for God to protect my church from my blind spots. I believe by regularly praying this it not only protects my church, it also keeps me aware of my own short falls. It keeps me humble and open to my Fathers work in those troublesome areas.

    When it comes to being open to others speaking into my life. Just recently I was speaking with a leader in my church about a struggle in my own life. I sensed they didn’t give me 100% of what I they wanted to say. I plan to ask that person this week if I have given them the freedom to speak all the truth into my life. I want to be approachable and teachable.

  8. Feb 8, 2010 at 10:00 am

    This topic shall be really interesting!

  9. Feb 8, 2010 at 3:43 pm

    What is truly unsettling is that self-perception is truly the only reality of which many people are aware. In an age when we like to be heard, but rarely listen (even to ourselves), it seems fair to accept that most people’s perceptions of others are really just projections of themselves. Whether that is a an act of self-praise or self-loathing, perceptions are almost never truly reality. I look forward to your thoughts.

  10. Feb 8, 2010 at 5:53 pm

    This is so good. God is currently taking me through a time of self-awareness, and some of it is not very fun! I’m looking forward to hearing more of what you have to say…

  11. 11Avery
    Feb 8, 2010 at 7:49 pm

    Such an important topic…

    The disillusionment that can come with leadership, i.e. (I am a leader because I’m smarter, better, and more experienced than average, or I’m a leader so the rules don’t necessarily apply to me, or I’m a leader and if someone disagrees, they obviously are wrong after all if they were right they would be the leader..) etc…

    This kind of false self perception can, and has caused the downfall of many, many leaders…

    Sounds to me like you are speaking from personal experience…

    We have such a strange culture today where perception is concerned… I am looking forward to what God has been showing you to build in this area!

    I have always considered my role as a leader as a position of greater servanthood, and of more work and accountability, greater sacrifice… today it seems to mean less and less of those things…

  12. Feb 9, 2010 at 12:34 pm

    If perception is reality then Jesus was a glutton and drunkard. Sometimes in trying to shorten the explanation of a concept it becomes untrue. The truth is that people RESPOND not to reality but their PERCEPTION of reality. That’s why Paul could say he lived with a good conscience even when he was persecuting Christians. He THOUGHT he was doing God’s will. “You shall know the TRUTH and the TRUTH will set you free.”

  13. Feb 9, 2010 at 1:31 pm

    Sometimes it’s not just about perception, but admission. Often we know the truth, but fail to admit it.