When you are taking steps toward fulfilling a goal, your greatest source of strength may come from a group of people you trust.
Who do you trust? Who can you ask for advice, clarity and accountability? Can these people help you take the next step?
Many times, we look around us and see that the people closest to us do not have the knowledge, expertise or temperament to help us achieve our goal. Studies show that we become like the people we are closest to. Do the people I am surrounded by represent the type of person I want to become?
Proverbs 27:7 says, ‘As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another’. We all need the sharpening power of a trusted group of advisors. I do not mean a committee or a board of directors. I mean 3-5 people who can help you see your work from a different perspective and encourage you to take the next appropriate steps. We gain so much wisdom from the experience of others. (Read more about wisdom here)
As John Donne said, ‘No man is an island’ and God did not call us to wander alone, without help or accountability. Your ability to reach your calling is either helped or hindered by the people you choose to be around.
What happens when we have an inner circle of trust?
To begin with, ideas flow freely. Admit it—alone, you do not have all the best ideas nor the complete knowledge of any system. No one does.
Collaboration with trusted people often leads to a breakthrough. When you combine ideas, instead of just transferring ideas, new and unique solutions come to the surface.
If you need to develop trusted relationships, how do you choose these people?
- Look for someone who is trustworthy. So often, people overlook glaring, obvious flaws in a person, so let the person’s action and character speak for themselves.
- Look for someone who has a different perspective than you. For example, are you a big picture thinker? Get to know someone who is detail-oriented.
- Look for someone who is willing to challenge or confront you. Having a ‘yes man’ on your team can seem attractive, but you want someone who can see problems and overcome them.
- Look for someone who is a leader.
Developing these relationships from scratch can seem overwhelming, but there are action steps you can take today that will help you develop the power of a trusted inner circle.
To begin with, commit to actually finding these relationships. Make it a priority. Develop your social skills, networking skills and put time for development into your calendar.
Pray. Seek the face of God, and ask Him, ‘Who do you want to bring into my life, to help me with this calling?’ They do not have to live close by! Thanks to the power of technology, God may bring you a trusted advisor from the other side of the world.
Then, actually ask the person, ‘Can we work together on this? Will you be a part of my circle of advisors? Can I trust you to help me on this project?’