Who are you?”… “I am a free man!” (Pearce & Komisar, 2013, p. 11)

People often take what they have for granted, forgetting that some people can brag about having their childhood spent with parents, forgetting that even though they felt wrapped up in misery, their life eventually was filled with love, forgetting to care about the people who care for them, regardless of the circumstances.

A mother walking the streets hand-in-hand with her child is a priceless view to have, two brothers hugging each other, two lovers holding hands frozen in a moment of what seems to be endless love¾we all sometimes forget about the things that really matter. I wish to remind everyone who may be doubting that no matter how many lives we might have in front of us, family, love, and acceptance are the things we all need. We can have hardly anything more valuable than an honest hug and words of consolation. Alone, even with a million other materialistic values around us, happiness cannot be everlasting without others’ love and attention.

We ought to appreciate even the times of sorrow, because we learn to recognize joy when it strikes us, and it will. I learned that life is not colored in white and black¾it is a spectrum of every color colorful and vivid for those who are not locked in chains of solely striving toward the materialistic, forgetting about things that are the most valuable and unavailable for purchase.

Finding myself, through books, songs, movies, experiences, childish experiments, and exploring different religions, trying to unravel the meaning, trying to find the answers to my pain and loneliness, travelling the world, meeting people, I finally managed to find my true self and accept who I am.

Parentless or living with parental love and care, capitalistic or socialistic society, Ukrainian or American, homosexual Mormon or heterosexual Orthodox Christian, does it really change the person we are? Does any of it make us better or worse? Or is it all written in the way we treat others and expect to be equally treated?

Today “I am a free man!” and building my own inspirational future. As a leader, it is my responsibility to share and to show that every life counts, no matter how lonely we may feel. Going back, dreaming, remembering, and recalling, I am going to communicate my experiences in writing or in words, reviving every moment I went through, breaking loose, telling another story of someone who counts…me. We are all the same human beings, but so different from one another. Only if we could find a way to be different together, we can get along with each other.

“I am a free man!” – This is what every leader should be able to say. Personal issues (the daemons as I call them, which draw a leader down) should not interfere with the professional issues. A leader will successfully lead others and bare the burdens of others, only if this leader is able to free himself up and honestly exclaim in his heart: “I am a free man!”

Pearce, T., & Komisar, R. (2013). Leading Out Loud: A Guide for Engaging Others in Creating the Future (3d Edition ed.). San Francisco, California: Jossey-Bass.

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