Proverbs has some incredible insights on how we are to live our lives. In this post, I want to point out three scriptures that, if practiced, will make you a better leader/person.
- Proverbs 18:13 tells us, “To answer before listening – that is folly and shame.”
Picture this – you go to someone for help and as you start to tell your story the person interrupts you with a solution that is nowhere near what you need. They heard a few words and just started spouting off all kinds of things. How did that make you feel? How did you leave that conversation? Encouraged? Or discouraged?
Don’t be that person – slow down, listen, ask questions. The person talking to you will tell you how you can help them. And armed with more information, you can be of greater assistance.
- Proverbs 18:2 tells us, “Fools find no pleasure in understanding but delight in airing their own opinions.”
Picture this – you’re in a conversation and there’s that one person who knows everything about everything. He/she ultimately has no idea what he/she is talking about, yet they are dominating the conversation. How do you walk away thinking about that person? They’re a fool? Or they’re a genius?
When in conversations, ask more questions. Slow down and really listen. You know what you already know, now you get to learn from someone else. You can learn from anybody if you just take the time.
- Proverbs 12:18 tells us, “The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”
Picture this – you’re in a conversation with a colleague/friend and he/she is very open about his/her criticism about a fellow colleague/friend. This person keeps airing all these negative opinions. What are you thinking as this persons continues this stream of negativity? How are you feeling as he/she progresses?
Don’t be that person. Once something is said, you really can’t take it back. The damage is done. This old saying rings true today, “If you don’t have anything good to say, don’t say anything at all.” Choose your words wisely. Hard things sometimes need to be said, but that doesn’t mean they have to be said harshly.
- Proverbs 15:1 tells us, “A gentle answers turns away wrath, but a harsh words stirs up anger.“
Picture this – you and a colleague/friend are having a conversation and someone interrupts your conversation. You can tell he/she is upset as he/she starts saying all kinds of negative/hurtful things about someone else. It gets a little uncomfortable and you end the conversation quicker than you intended. How do you walk away thinking about this person? How are you feeling about what was said?
We are emotional beings. And at times, our emotions can get the best of us. In those moments, we can say things we normally don’t generally say or even believe.
Again, don’t be that person. When upset, slow down and gather your emotions. Give yourself time and space before you engage with someone. And if you have to vent, do it with a trusted confidant who you know will not repeat it or allow him/herself to altered by it.
Those are just a few leadership bites the book of Proverbs has to offer. I hope you found them helpful!