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Watch 2022 online sermons » Craig Groeschel » Craig Groeschel - Leading Beyond Your Age

Craig Groeschel - Leading Beyond Your Age


Craig Groeschel - Leading Beyond Your Age
Craig Groeschel - Leading Beyond Your Age
TOPICS: Leadership Podcast

Hey, it's great to have you back for another episode of the Craig Groeschel Leadership Podcast, where we are incredibly passionate about helping you become a leader that people love to follow. Before the interview that I know you're going to love, I wanna tell you a couple quick things. First of all, is about an event in August, it's called the Global Leadership Summit. This is an event that I've been attending for over 25 years, honestly, and I started teaching there around 2008 off and on, and I've been honored to do the opening talk for the last few years. I promise this is an event that'll help you grow in your leadership, it's broadcast to about 1300 sites around the world, over 500 sites in the US. Let me tell you who's gonna be there. We've got the former CEO of Disney, Bob Iger is going to be speaking, the owner and president of In-N-Out Burger. Oh my gosh, I have a hard time driving by In-N-Out Burger, Lynsi Snyder's gonna be there. Also Pastor Andy Stanley, Judah Smith, other CEOs and leading thinkers will be there. If you want to attend, you can attend online or in one of 500 sites across the US, just go to globalleadership.org and type in the code CGLP22 for a discount code, that's globalleadership.org CGLP22 when you're checking out and the event is on August of 4th and 5th in Chicago. Also in August, I'm excited to be releasing a new book, "Lead Like It Matters: 7 Principles for a Church That Last," this is a revised and expanded version of a book called "It" that I released in 2008. If you would like to get additional bonus content early about this book, you can go to craiggroeschel.com, there's information there. And now I'm really excited to introduce my interview today, Sadie Robertson Huff, is a New York Times bestselling author and speaker, the Founder of Live Original. One of the greatest people I know, fantastic leaders, she's got an incredible podcast, if you're not listening to it, you'll want to, it's called WHOA, that's good. Her new book is out it's called, "Who Are You Following?: Pursuing Jesus in a Social Media Obsessed World". I promise you anything she writes, anything that she creates, you're gonna wanna consume the content. And now is my honor to introduce Sadie, welcome aboard.

Thank you so much, great to be on.

Hey, it's great to have you again. I wanna say thank you for preaching at our church, you did a fantastic job there.

Yes, thank you.

And I'm excited to have you share your wisdom with our leadership community.

Thank you.

Let's start off talking about just the idea of leadership. We have a lot of people say to you that would say, I'm not really a leader because they don't have a title or a position. And I like to always try to help them understand that, what is leadership in essence, leadership is influence, and everyone has influence. I wanna dive in and talk a lot about influence, but first I'd like to hear a little bit of your leadership journey. When did you recognize that you could actually influence people in a helpful direction?

Yeah, that's great. Well, I love where you're going with this because I talk so much in the book about influencing and how everyone has influence, everyone's a leader. So I love that you are stressing that as well. 'Cause I mean, whether you're leading in a good way or bad way, you're leading one way or another. And it is important that you recognize the leadership that you have and that people are following you. So I think man, when's the first time I realized, it's funny 'cause really when I was very little, when I was five years old, I would get on my countertop and I would preach to my parents and they have videos of it, it's hilarious. And even some of the things I said are very crazy that I even said it when I was young. So, I guess from a young age, I started using my voice, and realizing that words matter and words have impact. And then probably whenever I was in middle school, I remember there was a moment that all the girls in eighth grade just get so mean like just so rude and so mean, and it starts early, but before eighth grade it almost feels like everyone's weird and you just acknowledge that and you just own it, and no one cares, but then eighth grade girls get mean. And I remember thinking like, I hate this. Like why is this the case? And so I asked my teachers if I could go talk to the fifth graders and I could kind of encourage them to not become like we had become, don't lose your innocence, don't lose that purity, don't lose the goofing off and laughing at yourself and all that kind of stuff and think you're too cool for school. So as an eighth grader, I went and talked to the fifth graders about that and prepared them for what was to come and to not go that route. And so I think in eighth grade I was like, man, I have something to say that's of value and that could impact people's future. I don't wanna use that. And in a sense, I'm kind of still doing the same thing, using my words, I know words hold the power of life and death and I wanna use 'em for life and that's how I choose to speak. And so, I wanna be at the end of the day, a leader that was influencing for the good. And I think that's ultimately what you all have to ask yourselves like you are leading, that's a fact, and how are you leading? Is it in a good direction or a bad?

I would think that a lot of our audience would know who you are. Very few people would probably know the breadth of what you do. You're a bestselling author, you've got a fantastic podcast, you're a massive social media influencer, you create YouTube videos, you created an app that's incredible to help disciple and train young women, you lead a conference, you have a big team of people. And so, sometimes people look on, they just see a social media feed and they don't know all that goes into that. Can you help me understand as a younger leader, how is it that you're learning to grow in your leadership as you're developing your leadership because exponentially, your influence is increasing, and you're having to learn on the fly, how do you do that?

Yeah, I actually just told someone recently it's so interesting to navigate leading and learning at the same time. But I think every leader should be learning, the best leaders are always learning. I'm just happening to learn a lot while I'm leading a lot. So leading at such a big capacity, but also learning at such a huge capacity too, because I am young and I don't know it all, I don't know half of what I might even need to know for what I'm doing right now and how I'm leading. And so I think that the ultimate thing in that is just having humility and being able to say, look, I don't don't have it all, don't know it all, and knowing the right people to call to learn from, talk to you about some of those people in my life right now, Jennie Allen is someone doing a lot of what I'm doing at a higher capacity, a few years ahead of me. So I'm learning from her, I'm asking her a question, sitting with her Christian and I even went to a life coach recently, which we didn't know that we needed that, but we did, and that was pivotal for us. So, just trying to do the best that we can to be intentional about stewarding what we have, but also being humble enough to say, we don't do this perfect every day and we need to learn. And I think last year I went through this season where I tried to act like I had it all together, like I knew what I was doing, I was leading well and I crumbled. I was like, this is actually not good because I don't have it all together, and I don't know exactly. And it was in that moment where I did kind of have a crumbling moment, maybe even a hint of burnout moment that I got the help I needed, I got the mentor that I needed, I did the life coach thing, I sat with the Lord like I need to sit with him and just reposition myself to lead from humility. And I think that's how you have to lead if you're gonna lead and learn at the same time.

So, as someone who's led for a long time, your answer is both wise for someone your age and is wise for someone my age, meaning we have to continue in that posture of humility and the moment you start to think you know it all is when you're really in trouble. What's interesting is I literally was way more confident in my knowledge of leadership 20 years ago than I am now.

That's funny.

Because now I know what I don't know. And so, I'm interested because there's a couple things going on. Number one is, you've got real leadership intuition, and I hope you know that, but we use sense momentum and you follow it and you help create it. But at the same time you are a student of leadership and you're growing. So, I'd like to have you unpack both of those. How do you recognize something that's working and put momentum behind it? What is it that you see in your organization, your team? And then secondly I wanna ask you about how you do develop on the rep. So let's just say you do have the leadership intuition and to some degree, everybody does, some would have a little more than others. What is it you're looking for when you say here's an idea worth pursuing?

Yeah, I think a lot of it is just impact. Like, what impact does it make on people? How does it move people? You know, we've done a lot of things that have worked through LO. LO is my ministry business, it's Live Original, it's a long way, but we call it LO. A lot of things that have worked, like you mentioned, we've done app, we have the app that's doing great, we have conference, tours, podcasts, all this different stuff, working great. But there have also been some things that have flopped that just did not work. We tried to do a box one time and we thought this was just gonna be so great because basically I wanted to help girls lead Bible studies. And I felt like it's so hard to lead a Bible study, people feel awkward about it, people feel nervous about it, we'll put everything they need in the box, send it to their doorstep and all they have to do open the box and lead. We had so many people saying they wanted to do this anyways, that we thought this would be awesome. Well, it wasn't because people still thought that was intimidating and didn't wanna buy the box. And so, it just didn't work out, it was kind of a flop all this stuff. And that's when you just go, okay, not there, but now we've developed everything that we developed in the app. That was actually everything that we originally developed for the box in the app now and now it works, that works a lot better because people will get on the app and they'll lead from an app and they'll read off their phone. For some reason, the box is a little bit more intimidating, but the app worked. And so I think I just realized, okay, do people feel comfortable? Is it impacting people? Is it moving people? Is it answering a problem that someone has in their life? Yes, awesome, whoa that's good podcast. Like there's so much movement behind it because people need good advice, everyone wants a mentor, everyone's scared to ask someone to be their mentor, no one knows who to ask. Well I'm able to have this reach and ask people to come on my podcast, who essentially mentors them every Wednesday, you get to hear well, that's good advice from people like you, Louie Giglio all these incredible leaders. And so, I think that I look for that impact. See I think everyone has to have kind of a mission that they're going for, a goal they're going for, I know what I'm trying to do. And so, if whatever I'm doing, if it's breathing into that and making that move, then that's a good thing. If it's just not really touching anybody, not really moving anybody, people are intimidated by it, people don't understand it, then, time to move on, learn from it.

Well, exactly, I wanna unpack a couple things you said 'cause first of all, and even your language, you said a couple things that I picked up on, one is, so you had the idea for the box, it actually sounds like a pretty good idea, and then it didn't work, and then that rolled into the app, which is now very successful. We have a similar story, which is the YouVersion Bible App, which is on over half of a billion devices, came out of a failed website attempt to engage people in the Bible. And you said a couple things, one in there you said, oh well, and like that didn't work, and then toward the end you said something similar to that as like we learned and moved on. And I think that your willingness to fail and your high tolerance for failure is a part of the reason why you're successful. How is it that you're able to take failure in stride when so many people are paralyzed with fear of failure?

Yeah, man, I think failure is just, it's part of it, it's part of their journey, it's what makes you human. One thing that I try to do, and it's actually, I think saved me from a lot of bad things in life is people try to make you not human, and I love trying to make myself so human just fighting that like fighting people putting me in that box because that's too much pressure, I want to be human. And so I, my mom always told me, if you have something to say that you've done that you've made a mistake in be the first one to say it, because she always said to us, 'cause we had a large platform for those who don't know my past story. My family had a TV show that was very successful. I was on, "Dancing with the Stars" that gave me a lot of fame. And she was like, people are gonna find out about any mistake you made, be the first to say it. And so, I always just said it, I always just was very vulnerable with people that listen to my stuff, very honest with what I struggle with, everyone knows, I'm an open book, like you're not gonna find out something about me that I haven't already written in my book, that I've already said on my podcast, it's not gonna be like a shock value. And so I think failure in business is kind of that, it's like, well, I'm human, and it's okay and I can get back up and I'm gonna learn from it and I'm gonna take from it. And also even, I mean, just having a sports background, I remember I used to practice so hard I would shoot 100 shots at no, I'd make 100 shots in basketball before I would go in after practice because I so desperately did not wanna shoot an air ball. I hated the thought that I would shoot an air ball, and that gasper that embarrassment from the audience I'd be like air ball. So I worked so hard to not, guess what? I still shot some air balls. 'Cause it happens, 'cause the game gets going to get crazy and that's life, you can prepare all you want, you can be the best leader you wanna be, you can be looking at everything, but you're still gonna have an air ball every now and then, but that doesn't take away from the rest of the game. You know, you gotta get back up, you gotta keep going, you gotta keep shooting. And I think recognizing that you're human and actually owning that and being proud of that, it honestly brings more people in. I think it makes people trust you more to know that, hey, you're not gonna, just leave when you fail. When you fail, you're gonna get back up. People I think can trust you more and trust the longevity of what you're doing.

One of the 15,000 reasons why you're on this podcast is because there's so many, but one of them is that I think it's so wise for different generations to learn from each other. And so, as much as I might have to offer basic with time in the game, you have perspective to offer, you have a passion to offer that's so incredibly valuable. And I think that you're hitting on something that your generation intuitively embraces that sometimes my generation overlooks and that's just the power of authentic leadership. Meaning, most leaders at any age, we feel this pressure, this inward pressure to be perfect, to always have all the answers. And I've talked about before, but we may impress people with our strengths, but we connect with our weaknesses. And we say on the podcast oftentimes that be yourself because people would rather follow a leader that's always real than one that's always right. And so I think intuitively what you've done is you even though people would project a lot of expectations on you because of your fame, you disarm it with a real personal sense of authentic here's who I am, I'm just saying. And I think that if leaders could understand that they could be so much more effective. So I would love for you to speak to as a 24 year old and I'm 54. Speak to me, speak to my peers and tell me what advice you would give to give us the courage to be way more authentic about our weaknesses.

That's good, man, my mom set a great example of this. My mom and dad, both. And that is that they never acted like they were perfect, never. They were very open with their struggles, what they struggle with and what was great about that is it invited me in to talk to 'em about mine. You see, I was not nervous to go talk to my parents about, hey, I just went through this or I did this because I already knew that they did the same thing when they were younger. So, it wasn't so intimidating. And I think so many people don't talk to the older generation about things that they struggle with because they're like, well, they never struggled with that or they're perfect. And what I've realized is the more I just talk to older people about things that I'm struggling with, they're like, yeah, me too or if you say, oh, I'm sure you never went through that, they're like, are you kidding? Like I was 20 at one point too and I probably went through the same things, if not more, if not crazier than what you're talking about. And so, again, we're all human, like we're going through the same experience of life, we all had the same, like 24 hours, we're all seeing the same thing, different perspective, different life stories, of course. But when we relate on those things that are just relatable to human beings, it's amazing, the advice that you can get. And I love to learning from different generations, I think when wisdom and zeal meet each other amazing things happen, right? But yeah, I would just say it just, the more real that you are truly, the more respect young people have and not even just respect, the more trust they have, the more people are gonna come to you, the more people are gonna wanna learn from you and man, some of the best leaders that I know have just been the ones that sat down with me and had coffee at their house and just didn't act like they were a big deal. We sat on their front porch, we had coffee, we had a pizza, whatever it was, it just was so comfortable and casual even with you and Amy sitting with us earlier and just having lunch and like taking time to just be human and be real, it's so important, it truly is.

Well, I love the way that you care for people. I think that's one of the great attributes of your leadership. And I wanna stay kind of in the generation lane for a minute because it's so fascinating to me, at 24, would you be a cusper or are you purely Gen Z, do you know?

I think I'm like the year that it changed from like millennial to Gen Z.

You might be called a cusper, you're kind in between. And so what we've got, number one is, we've got a lot of kind of millennial and Gen Z leaders, we also have a lot of people that are leading them. So I wanna ask us from a couple angles. First of all, with Gen Z coming, they've got a lot of different qualities than even the millennials in the way they work and their values. Could you give advice 'cause you work with a lot of younger leaders and just younger people in general, what advice would you have to leaders, to empower, encourage Gen Z to invest your life in places that matter? What do we need to know to engage their hearts in a way that brings the best out of them?

First thing that comes to mind is, not trying to be them but being you. And what I mean by that is I think a lot of times like the older generation is so wanting to understand the younger generation that they try to talk like them, act like them, be like them. But some of my favorite leaders are the ones that are totally owning their generation and not acting like us, not talking like us, not and I'm learning from that because to me like what I'm leading in, the area that I'm leading in is a lot in the church. So I'm talking about the word of God, the word of God doesn't change, right? It's the same yesterday, today, and forever. And so, when I'm learning from someone older than me, I know I can get in so much wisdom because I'm learning on a topic that doesn't change, even though trends change, things change, people change. I'm learning on a topic that that doesn't change and I know they know so much more than I do just strictly from years in studying and waking up early and going to bed late and reading and all that stuff. So I'm like, I don't want you to sound like me, I wanna sound like you, you know? And so just staying confident in their leadership and not trying to be super trendy and cool, to me, that's more authentic, you know? And I learn a lot from authenticity 'cause I wanna be authentic. And so, when I'm looking at an older generation, I'm not looking for someone cool and trendy, I'm looking for faith and authenticity, you know? And so, someone who can just be confident in their leadership, that's who I wanna learn from.

Yeah, so good. I think it was Bain & Company who did research on this, that they looked at the traits and qualities that would inspire and motivate people. And what they found was that there were dozens of different qualities and you don't need all of them. And literally one of them is just empathy. One of them is consistent encouragement. One of them is dependability. And so I think your word is so good to all ages that if you be who you are and genuinely care about the leaders around you, not trying to be something you're not, and I'm not trying to impress them, not trying to be cool, not trying to be them I think it's really good advice. Let's flip it a little bit and now let's say you're talking to a room full of 18 to 25 year olds and you're gonna come down, you're gonna be a little bit firm, Sadie. Where you're gonna say I got some advice for you. What advice would you have to encourage that generation to be all they could be as leaders?

That's great. Gosh, I mean, I think I go back, I go back to that humility thing and that you don't know it all. Like you do not know it all, don't act like you do. I've sat in rooms with young people and sometimes it's hard for me because it'll be a lot of people at my age, and a lot of older people and it's like, they come in with this entitlement, like all this that you have to learn from us because we are Gen Z and cause we understand and I'm like, no, actually, we have a lot to learn and we have a lot we don't understand. And when we look around at Gen Z as a whole, yes, there's great things happening, there's a lot of bad things happening, there's a lot of for real bad things happening that we should probably quiet ourselves enough to listen to what an older generation who has lived long enough to see some of these trends come and go, who has lived long enough to see, wars and hard moments and like whatever we're going through enough to speak into our life. You know, for me, I love sitting at my great grandma's feet and just listening to her. I'm so grateful to have a great grandma who's still alive. And I'm like, look times seem crazy right now, have you seen anything like this? And to hear her be like, you know, this is unique, but yes I have actually like when we live through this or we live through that and now we're here and it gives me so much like, okay, we're gonna be okay. And I think young people need to do more of that instead of going to the old people and saying, well, this is what you need to do better of, and this is what you didn't do, and this is what you actually y'all did a lot of great things and you're doing a lot of great things and we need to learn a lot from that. And so I would just say, quit the entitlement thing, quit the entitlement thing, humble yourself and learn. And it's awesome that you are using your voice and it's awesome that you're doing your thing, that's a great thing, but just know that you do have a lot to learn. And so not speaking with such entitlement, I think that's the hard thing.

And I always say the same thing to the older generation too, which is, just 'cause you've lived longer doesn't mean you're still current in being great and effective. And so, I wanna press into that a little bit. This is pretty amazing, you're 24 years old and you have started and built a very sophisticated app. You have started and are building a very strong conference. You have started and have created a massive following on a YouTube channel, you create content, you have built a very effective and growing team, you're hiring people even right now. So you're starting a lot. You started more at an early age and many people will start in their entire lifetime. Talk to me about starting, how do you go from idea to implementation? Let me kind of tell you what I'm looking for. What's first, is it concept, is it title, is it LLC, S-corp, is it structure, is it people, is it posture, is it values? What are the first things that go through your mind as you're formulating your strategy to launch something new?

That's great, I love this question. I'm such a vision person. So I am like, I love the start. Also love the sustaining too, 'cause I think that's obviously super important and a lot of people can start something, but like, I wanna be doing this when I'm 50. So, how do we start something well, how do we sustain it? But to start something man, we get in a room my team and we have a lot of just like meetings so that we talk or we pray or we're. But we also not just that, we also do a lot of ministry to where we're hearing the needs and seeing the needs of people. Like I said, this is where I lead and the capacity I lead so this is what I'm trying to do. And so, when I look at a problem, say I see a problem then I'm like, okay, how can we fix that problem? Like I said, there's a lot of people who want a mentor, don't know how to get a mentor. All right, well what can we do to help these people get a mentor? We could start a podcast, that's a good idea, then we can have people on it who are mentors to me, and then that idea just explodes. And then we're like, okay, how do we start a podcast? Well, sometimes we just Google that. How do we start a podcast? And then we get the right people in the right place or we get the right equipment or whatever, and then we just start, you know, my podcast started.

So let me stop you because you just said a lot there. So, we just Google it, so you just try and then you said we get the right people, which is really, really big. And you said we get the right product.

We get the right people, we get the right equipment.

And then you said, we just start. So I need to just, this is for the benefit of our listeners because you just rattled it off, but you just Google it, meaning like you just get in there and you mix it up, like you try something, you just try something and that's really important. And then you said, we get the right people and you blew by it. How do you find the right people?

The right people definitely hard to find. And I will say sometimes you don't find the right people at the start, and sometimes you start something with somebody and you shift a couple months later, and even with our podcast, we had people who started out helping us, who were great people, but we just knew not the right people, we shifted out of that, we have a new team now. Our podcast looks so different as far as the back end of it than it did whenever I started, whenever I started, I literally got the little mix P3 system and had my headphones, did the whole thing and it worked great, I traveled with it, it was great. Now, we have a studio, we have a whole team, we have people doing all the things and it's awesome, but that's not how we started. And I think sometimes it's hard because people think, oh, well you're a celebrity, you have it, I'm like, no, all of this has started from what grass roots, and you don't know what you don't know and you learn as you go. And I think one thing that's important to realize is like, you're not gonna have it all together when you start, you just have to start, have as much as you can but you just have to start. But I will say some things do take longer to start. We had this idea to start a worship team four years ago I've been working on it consistently for four years, and then this summer we'll drop our first EP. So sometimes starting is really hard and there's a lot of backing you have to do, and then sometimes it's literally, I'm gonna buy this equipment, I'm gonna find the right person, and I'm just gonna record a podcast.

Yeah, I can only imagine who this is speaking to right now because I think one of the things that I tend to underestimate is how often people find it hard to start and they have an idea and they look at it, they lean into it. And like you said, sometimes you just start and that's literally the way you said, like you just start, like this podcast, the leadership podcast was something I looked at for probably six or seven years and thought, well, my friends are doing it, I don't wanna deal with them, but I wanted to. And then one day, without knowing anything, we said, let's just start. And so sometimes would just start. And so someone listening right now, just start.

Just start and speaking to the people, sometimes the people are in your life who you didn't expect. Two people that have worked with me and for me for five years are two of my best friends. And we have complete different giftings, I'm such a visionary person. I'm like, we're gonna do this, we're gonna do this, we're gonna do this, and I'm like, go, go, go, let's do it. I wanna be the hands and feet of it, all this stuff. Then I have another person who is one of my best friends, logistics all day long. I mean, she can line it up, she can do it, she'll do the whole thing, she's the person that's like, let's Google the best, let's get it, blah, blah. The other person is super creative. I mean, she can design anything. So together, the three of us, we were a team together for, I guess, three years and now we have more people on our team, but we started it all together. And those are just two of my people. And so maybe you look up and you're like, hey, you're really great at that, I'm really good at this let's partner together and let's build something awesome.

And sometimes the people don't come until you do start oftentimes and it's hard to really get it right at the beginning. So sometimes you just go with what you've got. How do you as a leader choose wisely and be selective in the opportunities that come before you?

Gosh, that is really hard lesson to learn like what you say yes to and what you say no to and what ideas are worth pursuing and what ideas are a great ideas, but it's okay for you to not do that right now. I think sometimes I have it in this category of, there's a lot of things I wanna do. A lot of people say you do so much, like that's awesome, I'm like, oh, there's so much I haven't done yet that I wanna do, I have like a 50 year old goal, and then I have like a five year goal and like all those things and think that's great, I think some of it's just timing, some of it, I say, this is great, this is not now, this isn't later. But a lot of it, I think I, like I said, I know what my mission is, I know what I'm trying to do, when I'm trying to accomplish while I'm on earth. And so, if it's something that directly goes towards that, I'm like, talk to my team, can we do this? Let's do it. If it's something that doesn't necessarily go with that, then maybe it's not now, maybe it's for a friend, maybe it's later, maybe it's not ever. And so I think, I had to get really particular about what I was gonna start saying yes to and start building, especially when we build a family because I wanna be there for my family, I wanna be, yeah, I wanna be a great leader and I wanna do ministry and be a great person of that. But more than that, I wanna be a great mom, I wanna be a great wife. And so, I gotta say yes to the right things and say no to the right things so I can say yes to my family. And so yeah, it kind of comes down to, what are my goals in life? What's my mission? This is all going with it, this is what I'm gonna do, these are things I wanna do, but it's not now it's gonna be later.

To be truly great. Do you say yes more often or no more often?

Probably, no.

I agree 100%. Most people would tend to think you do more and more and more, but I think that you would do fewer things that have a bigger impact.

Yes, and do those things well. I think I used to be really scattered and I don't like feeling like I'm doing a lot of things and none of them well, and it takes that discipline to be like, this is what I'm doing, and this is what I had the capacity to do things well in.

So, earlier in our conversation, you alluded the fact that there was a point where you're pushing it too hard and flirting with burnout. What I know Sadie right now is, I'm talking to more leaders who say their team members are struggling and oddly enough, 2020 seem to be the really bad year, now here we are in 2022, and it should be in many ways, a better year, but for a lot of team members, it's for whatever reason it's a lot worse and they're burning out, they're struggling. Can you tell us how you recognized that you were pushing it too hard? And what changes did you make to level out so you could be healthy?

Yeah, so in all honesty, I kind of said I was flirting with burnout, but I was pretty much burnt out. And I hate to say that because I love what I do so much. And I guess when I heard people burnt out, I felt like, oh, well, they're just tired of what they were doing, or they lost their I don't know their passion for it. And it's weird 'cause I didn't lose that, I always loved it and I always had passion for it. And I'm also 24 years old, and like I said, I wanna do this when I'm 50. So, I didn't wanna admit like I'm burn out here. But I mean, I ran myself to that point. I was honestly leading in things within what I'm leading, I was leading in ways I shouldn't have been leading. You know, I stepped over into more the logistics things, the operation of like trying to manage the team and all that when that's not my skillset, that is not what I love to do, that's not what I'm skilled in doing kind of stepped into that zone. I also had a baby and didn't slow down. Literally had a baby, wrote a book, like in the postpartum, like I started writing my book eight months pregnant, finished it two months after having Honey. So, wrote, wrote terrible time to write a book. I had one of my closest people in LO, in the ministry who was leading right beside me walk away, that hurt, that was the first time that had happened to me in that capacity. And I'd had people leave, but not like that. And after a combination of being really tired and working too hard on things that shouldn't be working on and being hurt by people and then comments all of a sudden start to really bother you. I was like, do I even wanna do this anymore? Can I even do this anymore? I really just didn't think I could. I was like, I don't know that I have it in me to do this. And just so happened, I went on a trip, didn't know Jennie Allen would be there, she was there, and I said, can I talk to you about something? And I opened up to her about feelings that I was having, hurt that I was having. And the biggest thing that I, when I realized I'm burnt out is actually because I love the Bible, I love the word of God that's what my ministry is built on. And I started feeling so anxious to read the Bible that I wouldn't even pick it up because what I had began to associate the Bible was with like super hard work and like stress and like needing to do something, needing to have a message, needing to have this prep. And I think that's when you know your burnout is when the thing that you love becomes like the burden. The thing that you love becomes like the source of your anxiety and the weight of all the things and a reminder of hurt and whatnot. And so, she looked at me and she spoke truth and she spoke life and she related to me and she didn't act like she'd never been there, she acted lik she had been there and it made me feel comfortable, and then she recommended the life coach and she said, you need to prioritize your life, you need to prioritize your team better, you need to get in your lane and let other people lead in their lane and just take a step back, so I did, and gosh, it's crazy because all that I just mentioned was only a year ago, and now, I feel like I am the healthiest leader that I've ever been. I feel like as far as the way that everything is structured, like my family life is going great, my work life is great, the ministry's great. And one year ago I would've been like, this is crumbling. Now I'm like, this is thriving because I got things in the right place and prioritized the right things. And now, I love reading the word again, I've come back to my first love. And so, if you're listening to this and the very thing that used to make you so passionate that you built everything on is now the thing that's like your biggest burden, I think maybe you should look at what went wrong, what are you prioritizing? Are you leading in a capacity that someone else needs to lead in? I think for me I was, after getting hurt was scared to let people lead LO because I cared so much about it, but you have to let people in, it's like the body of Christ, you gotta let people do their part.

I wish we could like go back and play back your interview and take it apart sentence by sentence, because you've said so much, that's super valuable. And I wanna bring it back into focus because I don't want someone just to be listening at 1.5 speed and miss the brilliance of it. One of the things you said is, you were burning out and it wasn't necessarily because you didn't love what you're doing, it wasn't because you were even doing too much, but you were out of your lane. And that's what happens a lot of times because we're leaders and because we care, we get into places that is not our strength. And not only does that end up costing us, but it also robs the people that are around us from doing what matters. And then I can only imagine, because you're talking about not wanting to read the Bible, like I was in a very similar place, it was worse than just not wanting to read the Bible, I didn't wanna read, period. Because reading to me, even like reading for fun, it felt like that was a work where I'm digging out content. And I can only imagine how many people right now are in a place where the very thing they loved right now is a thing that brings them stress. And we need to take a step back from it. And then you talk about getting a life coach. It's crazy to me, how often leaders resist asking for help. Meaning like you played sports the better the athlete, the more specified the coaching. If you are a pro doesn't have, in one of 20 people with one coach it's, it might be one player with three coaches, that are teaching different things. And so as leaders, we should always be seeking out wisdom and coaches. So you talked about the crazy book that you wrote when you probably should have been writing, but I wanna ask you about it. I'll hold it up just for people that are watching, "Who are you Following"? The story behind this book.

So, there's a reason why I was in crazy timing. I knew it was the time to write the book. Just as far as what the world is like going through. And I felt like when I look at the younger generation and I see social media, just being such a huge part of their life and also a pivotal thing in their life, without them realizing how pivotal it is, I was like, there's so many areas in our life that we can call a mentor and ask questions about and they can give us advice from a time that they lived through. Like I said, I can ask my great grandma, I can ask my mom, I can ask Louie, Jennie, Shelly, any of these people who are like my mentors, but social media is different because the older generation didn't grow up with social media, they're learning it too. So, we're all learning it. And then the older generation is looking to the younger generation to learn from, except for it's like the blind leading the blind, because we're leading with no wisdom, and we're leading while we're actually failing, we're leading while we're the most anxious generation, while we're the most insecure, while we're the most suicidal. So I'm like, clearly we're not leading well when it comes to social media. And I heard my friend say this one day, and I was like, I gotta write about this, I gotta do something about this. She said, I think TikTok is the worst thing for our generation. So really I was like, tell me more about that. She started telling me why TikTok is so horrible and all this stuff I said, but do you have TikTok? She said, well, yeah. I was like, why do you have it if it's the worst thing for our generation? She said, well, for entertainment purposes. And I was like, dang, all right, so we would be willing to say something is the worst thing for our generation and in the same breath, say, I happily have it still because for my entertainment, it's great. And I'm like, that's a problem. And I'm not anti-social media, I'm actually not at all, and you'll read that in the book. I'm pro social media, but pro healthy social media, and you're only as healthy as you are. And social media is a picture of us, social media is what we created. So social media will only be as healthy as we are. So why is it unhealthy? 'Cause we're unhealthy. Why is it bad? Because we put bad stuff out there. Why do we see things that we shouldn't see? 'Cause we follow accounts we shouldn't follow. And so I'm just saying, look, you have more control than you think, you get to choose who you follow, you get to choose what you post, you could choose what you look at and you have a part of playing an influential role in our world. It's an incredible thing to give you a platform to be an influencer. But use your influence. And you're not an influencer because you have a blue check, you're an influencer because you're a human who has people following them. And so, I just think, it's a needed book for this time. And I thought even being pregnant, I was like, my daughter's gonna be in this world one day and social media who knows what it would be when she's growing up. But I want it to go in the good direction, and if it's good to go in the good direction and I have an opportunity to speak into that, I'm gonna speak.

Well, I wanna tell you, thank you for writing the book and also just thank Christian, who's a great man, I know he is a great husband, and a great dad. And the two of you together, you have such a special place I believe in our world, and a lot of people applaud you for impacting the younger generation. I think you're just much better than that. I think you're impacting every generation and you have an integrity in your leadership, you have a humility, you have a hunger to learn and are always honoring those that go before you, which is rare and very special. But yet you've got just real game, I mean, you've got all day long, real leadership game. And so, I am just honored to be in the sidelines saying, go Sadie go. I think that your influence is gonna continue to make such a big difference and you give glory in the right places. And so, I appreciate you being a part of our leadership community and adding value today. And I do wanna tell everybody, get the book, it will impact your life. And wrapping this up, I would just say this, if it's your first time to listen, we do drop a new teaching on the first Thursday of every month, and there is a leader guide that I want you to get. If you go to life.church/leadershippodcast, the guide comes with application questions, all sorts of additional tools. And we've got links to everything in there that you would want to hear or follow up on. Also, if this is helpful to you, it'd be a massive gift to rate the podcast where we consume it, review it, it'll help give us more exposure. And hey, we see you all over the place on social media tag me. If you post tag Sadie, we might repost you and invite others to be a part of the community. Again, if you would like some additional content to the book, "Lead Like It Matters," you can get it early, just go to craiggroeschel.com that book comes out in August. Also we'll be at the Global Leadership Summit in August. You can attend there anywhere around the world online. The code is CGLP22 for a discount. And the link to the conference is in the notes that we'll send you as well. A big thank you for being a part of our community. And we'd say, continue to invest in your leadership because we know that everyone wins when the leader gets better.
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