I do not agree with the idea that you need followers in order to lead. I’d rather say that if you’re a leader, there will naturally be followers. Leadership in the end is about the influence you exert on others, and unless you are a hermit, cut off from the rest of the world, you have the opportunity to influence. And this influence could be either a negative or a positive one. You cannot control who you influence and who you don’t, everyone that comes into contact with you leaves with an impression, whether you want to or not. Picking up a plastic bottle on the side walk and depositing it in a recycling bin influences all those witnessing this seemingly benign action. But this action may have spurred the conscience of all those people; they now perhaps pay a little more attention to recycling throughout the day or even weeks….
Becoming self-aware is a process. It’s a process that continues as you change and the environment around you change. Starting this process is something that is fundamentally your decision. You and only you can decide to open up and embark upon this journey of self discovery. You cannot be forced and you cannot be taught to take the first step. Much like falling in love, you cannot be forced to love. Perhaps if we recognized that by being self-aware, you may become happier. You may start to move towards doing the things that is truly you, not “forced upon” by society, by your parents, by your professors. You may start to care about the things that truly matter to you, instead of spending time focusing on things that you think you should care about. Take that journey of self-awareness, for life is too short to be living a lie.