The word intentional can be defined as: done on purpose, deliberate. Preplanned, or something that has been calculated. Intentional doesn’t happen by chance, for that would go against its definition. Intentionally comes with planning, discipline, and follow through. Intentionally is hard, some would say grueling. Intentionality requires that many things work together.
As a leader, intentionality is a helpful pursuit in many areas. As Craig Groeschel says, “A good leader doesn’t just happen by chance, they are developed by intentional measures.” And yet, intentional output from a leader requires intentional intake.
Intentional output could look like consistency in vision, systems for growth and development, and even an unshakably positive attitude. Intentional input looks different. The input is what, and how the leader feeds themself in order to lead well. This is the content they read, who they receive counsel from, and even how they time-block each day.
So fellow leader, I must ask, is what you are intaking intentional for you? Does your intake fit your direction, passion, calling, and the needs of those you lead? Does your reading reflect your deliberate direction to grow? Does the person sitting across from you in the coffee shop reflect elements of the person that you want to become in 2019? Does your calendar safeguard opportunities to learn and be fed because you really believe in something? All in all, how are you honoring purposeful intake?
As an ever growing, and shifting leader, I believe simplicity is key, especially when it comes to intake. Here are three handles / questions I utilize:
Am I intaking a healthy amount of scripture on the daily? (And is this scripture reading planned out and not simply sporadic?
Am I intaking a healthy amount of content from the house I am currently in? (This includes the teaching of Pastor Josh, the teaching of my department head, and the sharing that occurs within the context of Light Group.)
Am I intaking a healthy amount of critique, feedback, and counsel from leaders who are years ahead of me?
We live in a world where weighing the options of what to ingest, read, scroll through, and listen to, as leaders is a daily choice. Though the extensive options are a blessing, I believe deliberate selections are the most effective. Hard, but effective. I encourage you to be purposeful, and deliberate in this new year with what you allow inside. For what is developing on the inside will eventually shine through on the outside.