I was introduced to this term as I listened to one of my favorite podcasts: Increase Your Impact with Justin Su’a. Esse Quam Videri is a Latin phrase which means: to be, rather than to seem (to be).
The world is full of great actors. We are all great at acting a certain way in a certain situation and then acting completely differently in a different situation. One of the areas I have tried to work on is to be the same person every day in every situation. I am still growing, learning, and striving to be the best I can be but I want to be a consistent person no matter what the circumstances or the environment are.
Is it difficult? Absolutely! Am I perfect at it? Not even close.
I want to make decisions and act according to my principles and values, rather than to get something out of someone, or because everyone else is doing it, or because it is the easy thing to do.
Esse Quam Videri is not tied to a result. It is not conditional. It does not waffle in the wind.
Here are some examples of conditional responses:
Building character through sports is okay...as long as we win.
Treating my teammates well is great...as long as I get to play and score enough points.
Deceiving and lying to my employees is acceptable...as long as I keep my job and stay in power.
This is called manipulation. I will do what you want me to do as long as I get what I want.
Frosty Westering said that when we win we show some of our character, but when we lose we show all of our character.
This is one of the problems with coaching and leadership in today’s society. We have made it transactional. We see the coach as someone who should give us what we want, or what we think we deserve, and if we don’t get that then we need to find someone else who can give provide us with the transaction that we need. Or the coach sees his players in a transactional way because they can get him more wins, which will get him more recognition or a better job.
It should not be transactional. It should be transformational. A coach should be a mentor who strives to help bring out the greatness in his players. Greatness is not winning a championship or averaging a certain number of points.
Greatness is living with humility.
Greatness is serving others.
Greatness is committing to the task at hand with your whole heart.
Greatness is having the courage to speak up for what is right.
Greatness is doing what is right no matter who is (or isn’t) watching.
How can we change that?
Every day as we go through life we have to answer one simple question many times…“Why should I do that?” There should only be one answer…“Because it’s the right thing to do.”
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