LISTEN TO EP.94
How to Overcome Your Insecurity and Step into Confident Leadership
Honesty moment… would you call yourself a confident leader? Some of the greatest leaders we know have secretly struggled with insecurity, peer pressure, and fear of failure. Glenn Dorsey, an international speaker, author, teacher, mentor, and spiritual father to many, transparently reveals his journey through his own personal struggles in leadership. He encourages any leader experiencing inner turmoil to develop a trusted circle of friends and find spiritual fathers who can call out greatness in you. With decades of ministry experience, he shares keys on how to become a confident leader, have a good reputation, remain unaffected by criticism, accept your failures as part of success, and surround yourself with mentors. If you are a leader who desires to be absolutely confident in your identity, this episode is for you.
Welcome to The Influencers Podcast. I’m Scott Young and cohost Dave Donaldson, who is out on assignment today. And we’re praying that God will use him wherever he is. We are here as The Influencers Podcast to see the influence of your life grow in your world and the world that you live in. And today we’re talking about leadership insecurities. I recently talked to a friend of mine who said they smile on the outside, but on the inside, they’re dying. Some of the greatest leaders that, you know, secretly struggle with insecurity pressure, even the fear of failure there often have a public persona and it never crumbles until something comes out in a scandal or public humiliation. Our guest today, Glenn Dorsey has written a fascinating book called “The Bulletproof Leader,” not just to teach leaders how to become better or how to have some principles of leadership, but to learn how to become leaders who are Bulletproof from the attacks that ravage leaders.
Glenn is a, a speaker, an author, a teacher, a mentor. And I love this a spiritual father because he has been around a long time. He pastored a church. I love the name of this church, the Open Arm Assembly for 33 years. And during that time, he pioneered a way of emotionally bringing help to emotional healing. And it still influences people today that ministry, he has running some conferences. Now that Geared Up Conference, which helps young leaders take their leadership to the next level, The Equipped Conference, which encourages leader to develop their spiritual lives. He’s been married for 54 years. He’s got a son and a daughter, five grandchildren, and his beloved wife, Gladys.
Glenn, I wanna welcome you to The Influencers Podcast and let just tell me what does it mean to be a Bulletproof leader,
To be a Bulletproof leader? To me implies a leader that is absolute confident in his identity. He’s impervious to critics rejection. He is open, he’s transparent with his life. He has no fear of personal attacks or on his, especially on his character. And he knows how to leverage failures, to take lessons that will push him toward success. He has a clear conscience. They surround themselves with people that reinforce them, especially in the areas where they’re lacking in their own life. And they’re free to be themselves. Ultimately that’s the Bulletproof leader.
So would you say to be impervious to the, the thoughts of others, do you think it’s more difficult for the words that leaders hear from the outside or from the inside dialogue that many of them have, which is more dangerous or maybe they’re equal? I don’t know.
I believe that any leader has conditioned themselves, that the voice on the outside never changes, but the voices that are nearest to us are voices that we must hear and we will get to this I’m sure later, but silence from those that are in our inner circle should be a matter of concern to us.
Okay. No, no. Let’s delve delve right into that. What does that mean?
That means that when people are silent, they don’t qualify to be in our circle because if they cannot, if I’m transparent and open with them about my personal issues. And that’s what we’re talking about is yep. It’s the private issues of the leader that we don’t wanna talk about, that we wanna hide. It’s Adam and Eve covering themselves with fig leaves. But when we get in the presence of God, those things come to the surface that must be dealt with when we become transparent and our weakness, our sin, our failure is known to our inner circle when they are silent, there is no trust.
So, so how do we encourage leaders, people that are watching people that are listening, how do we encourage them to move to a more transparent way of living?
I think one of the best ways is to take small steps.
When I talk about having circles of relationships, people qualify for different levels of trust. Jesus had the crowd, the multitude, he had the 500, he had the 120. He had the 70, he had the 12 and he had the three.
Those that were in the crowd certainly did not get what the 12 got. And the 12 did not get what the three got, what Jesus did for a role model for us all is before he reveals himself, he tested a person’s trust. He would give them small samples about his future to see if, how they would respond to that. And I believe our relationships needs to be tested because people qualify for different levels in that relationship based upon does these things come back to me if I like to test a relationship by saying something about myself that I don’t mind being known that most people would think, well, that might be a little embarrassing just to see if it gets back to me.
And so I just extend that knowledge about myself to, to greater levels and their response and in interaction with me. If I see sincerity in them, if I see that they are they’re trustworthy, then I can, I can move them closer.
So you, you would literally leak out some information to test who’s closest to you. You call them circles of relationship. And you’re looking for a small circle. I’m imagining that would be close to you, that you would have that.
So there are some leaders that they’re the only one in their circle. They’re very isolated, very much alone. How do we encourage them to say, okay, the safest way for you to live is to be in community with at least, I don’t know. I don’t know how many people you need in your closest circle, but you at least need some people in that circle.
The greatest fear that every leader has in common is who can I trust?
And we all know that there are certain people in our circle that we cannot be transparent with, but if there are leaders or peers that are in other organizations that we have relationships with it, we can feed off of one another in that area. The, my mind’s going blank. I’m sorry.
No, no, no problem. So when you say you would like to, you said it so brilliantly that a great fear that leaders have is who can I trust? Maybe they’ve been let down in their past. Maybe somebody has broken trust. I’m just wondering, how do we get them to be in a place of emotional health? God said, well, Jesus said, I like this whole, let me sum the whole Bible up. Love God, all your heart, mind, soul, and strength, love neighbors. You gotta have some people that you love like you love yourself. So there’s gotta be some way that you take care of your own soul and you, you mentor people. And how do we help the people that you mentor? How do you help them to take care of their own soul so that they can find trustworthy people to help them in their character development and character protection?
I discovered that people will first go to someone that has absolutely no knowledge of them because it’s a safe place. It can’t be the information they share cannot be used against them, professional help, or a counselor. And particularly the church that I pastored for 33 years with emotional healing ministry. I had people from all over the United States flying in to do a one on one session, simply because I knew nothing about their past. I didn’t know their reputation. I was a neutral speaker in their life. And we would seek points of entry, where they experienced emotional pain and most people that are in leadership that have a difficult time trusting goes back to events that are in their childhood rejection, the absence of a father, anger issues, and et cetera, to get to the root cause of those things, to take them to the scripture, give them a method of hope, but it becomes a communication line for them because what happens is they’re like a balloon that is just about ready to burst . And once they have an ear that they, that will listen, it becomes such a relief. I’ve had people just break down a weep and say, before you ever do any ministry, to me, it just feels good to get this out of me.
Plus, I tell people that everything that you shared with me will be confidential. Just like if you’re speaking to a medical doctor, I didn’t keep their information. Once they left, it was shredded. So there was a, a safety factor there of their information.
Finding Your Identity
But in bringing people to a place of stability in their life, goes back to the core of every one of us. And that is our personal identity. Most people take on an identity that other people have given them by labeling them.
And we take the labels off, but it comes back to who we are in Christ. It is our identity. Do I really believe I am who God says I am because all of their life, they have been told they’re not good enough. They can’t be successful enough. They’re not attractive enough. I’m not worthy of success. I’ve seen very brilliant people promoted to the top only to do something stupid because intentionally because they could not allow themselves to succeed.
Wow. You, you think they self sabotage?
Because they’re, it’s almost like, like a self-fulfilling prophecy. They don’t feel they’re good enough. So they’re gonna make sure they’re not good enough. They,
Well, it’s. It is like, it is like Isaac naming his son, Jacob
Deceiver. He didn’t disappoint him. He lived out what his father called him.
Yeah. Isn’t it great though, that God changed that like, so there was a, there was a transfer from what somebody said about him and his, his out, outside reputation to what God said about him. Israel. Yeah.
You know, it’s amazing. When he wrestle with the angel, he never asked him, what have you done? He never asked him what’s the, have you committed? What he asked him was who are you?
And, and that question has to be answered by every leader. We will never be successful. We will never feel secure in our leadership. We will never feel Bulletproof until we established an identity where I love myself. And not only love myself. I like myself.
Yeah. Yeah. Well that Jesus said, you, you, you love others. You love your neighbor. As you love yourself. You’ve gotta love this life that God has given you this gift of life that God’s given you.
Where Identity is Found
And I’m just, I just know somebody’s listening now. And you ask such a powerful question. I think we should just pause and just think, well, who am I? Who has God called me to be when we ask those questions, pause and think people aren’t listening right now. Where do they find the answers to that question?
It begins with a relationship with our creator.
There’s a very powerful key. I may get emotional in my conversation.
Jesus said, when you pray, don’t pray. Jehovah. Those are names of distance. When you pray, say our father.
Because our father gives us something that nobody else can say. He didn’t say pray to my father. He called him our father. He shares the fatherhood of God. He said, father, I have made known to them your name and his name was father. So what our father gives us that nobody else can give us is our identity. Our father tells us who we are and who we’re not.
Wow. So, so one of the things that was on here, just that you are a spiritual father. And do you just find that there are guys out there that need a, a spiritual father there, heavenly father to speak that truth into them that, Hey, there’s more in there than you really see in yourself.
I believe the gift of a spiritual father is to pull out the greatness of a spiritual son or daughter.
The spiritual father sees what they do not see in themselves. It’s like our heavenly father creating us. He made us all different. He put different giftedness in us, but it’s a father’s pleasure to pull out what he has created. And there is greatness in people that have failed, been rejected. There’s greatness in people that have experienced great emotional pain.
And a spiritual father pulls that giftedness out. And once that giftedness begins to work in the life of that son or daughter, suddenly a transformation begins to take place. It’s amazing that after God changed the name of Abram to Abraham
That it was a year before he would ever fulfill the name. The same is true with Sarah, who later became Sarah, God added his, his one letter H to both of their names. And it changed their entire life. They went from bareness to fruitfulness, just because of affiliation that they had with the father. He changed their identity. He told Abraham, quit calling your wife, Baron, start calling her fruitful.
Oh, that’s good.
And she became fruitful because he affirmed her. And what a father does is affirm who that person is, gives them protection, gives them validation, gives them access, gives them presence, helps them to identify their purpose. And the most fulfilling is when we hear them say I was born for this.
Yeah. Yeah. And, and we’ve got some people that are listening and on, on two sides of the spectrum, we have some somebody’s listening, saying, I wish there was some father that could speak that into me. And they’re listening right now and say, well, where do I find that father? Then we have, and I don’t know, at what point, let me just ask this. You’ve been around a long time, long term marriage, pastor, long time.
Becoming a Spiritual Father
When did you feel like that? Mantle of being a spiritual father was on you to pull that greatness out of people?
I believe it came on me. I’m 72 now. And it probably was in my late forties. Okay. Parallel it parallels with life. You’ve gotta have experience. You’ve gotta have seasoning. Yeah. You’ve got to have experience with God. And once that maturity level is of knowing your own skin, once you’ve established your own identity and are securing yourself, it doesn’t make any difference how other people respond to you because you know who you are and it frees you to help free other people because you’ve been there.
So, so what would you say? There’s a guy listening. He’s in his forties. He’s in his fifties and he should be taking on a mantle of influence. He should be a spiritual father. What would you say to sort of coach him, encourage him to become the guy that God wants him to be?
I would say that whoever’s anointing that you listen to whoever influence you spiritual is that you say in your heart, I wish I could be like him. I would pursue that individual. I would take them out to lunch. I would try to build a relationship with them that would lead to a question. Would you be my spiritual father? Would you be my mentor?
And I seriously doubt that they would be rejected.
An Emotional Health Check-up
So you’d also talk about like, being aware of yourself. If you’ve got some just emotional health, let do an evaluation of your, your physical being, your spiritual need being maybe mental health issues. How often should we do that evaluation? How do we evaluate ourselves to see where we’re at on the inside of our soul today? So we can take care of our soul. How, how, how do we evaluate ourselves?
I believe that we evaluate ourselves by listening to what other people are saying in our inner circle, because there will be people that will say things that we do not like we don’t want to hear. And we need to hear that there will be people that will come to us and say, I feel like that you’re struggling in this particular area of your life. The reality is that most leaders began to feel the pressure because of deadlines. And a report came out by the University of Southern California that said that 60% of all leaders have experienced some form of mental struggle, mostly being depression and anxiety and ADHD. So what happens is we exhaust ourselves, our spirit and soul are tied to our body and most leaders are driven and it’s hard for them to stop and they don’t take sabbaticals.
They don’t rest. And when they start getting weary, that that, that comes into the house. It comes into their spiritual life and it, and not intending to arrive at that point because of deadlines and personal issues at home or whatever, including business, we get exhausted. When we get exhausted, it becomes a playground for the devil to begin to open us up to temptation, to areas that can create great remorse. If we yield to the temptation that we feel like will gratify us at the moment, it is important that we establish boundaries that we cannot violate so that we do not find ourselves in that place of depression. And if you don’t mind, I’ll give you an example out of my own life.
The Moment That Changed My Life
I was building a new sanctuary and I made a mistake. I was building that sanctuary, working on it, physically myself every day, keeping all the pastoral duties, current my staff involved, but I was involved too much. I worked on that building for a year. We have some problems in the building and I’m standing on a two by 12, one single light in the ceiling and a pool of water around the front of the PLA platform because there had been a leak in the floor. My world came crashing in on me and every devil in hell started speaking to me. You’ve led these people into debt. You’ll never finish this building. You’ll be the laughing stock of this church. I was worn down. I’d heard criticisms about the building. And I was emotionally and spiritually at a low darkest day of my life. I, I, it embarrasses me to talk about it and I’d reach the point.
I’d made a decision. I’m gonna leave my wife. I’m gonna leave my kids. I’m gonna leave this church. I’m gonna get in my car and just drive away from it all stupidest thing a man could have ever done. And while I came to that conclusion and walked out of the building, a friend of mine that very seldom ever comes by, pulled up in front and he just so happened to be a minister of the gospel. And he said, Glenn, how’s it going? Hmm. And I just began to throw my inner feelings toward him because he was a very trustworthy person. Yeah. He saved my ministry. He saved my life that day.
He pointed out to me rest, get back into relationship with God. , you’re cheating your family. You’re cheating the church. So I understand what it’s like to get to a dark place. But when we reach that place, there has to be people that we open ourselves up to, to give them opportunity, to help us.
I want to thank you to Glenn for just, it’s pretty transparent. And for just trusting us with that story, because there, there are people listening and they’re in that 60% right now, anxiety, depression. And I hear two big things coming from you. You, you need to have an inner circle of people that you trust. And if you don’t have them, you just start on a journey to find them. And then you need spiritual fathers, someone that sees greatness in you and is gonna call it out. And I’d love people to connect a little bit more with you to get a whole, how do people get ahold of the, the Bulletproof leader and how do they connect with you? And just to experience the anointing that’s on your life.
Connect with Glenn
You can get the Bulletproof leader at any major outlet. They are at Barnes and noble it’s on Amazon. It’s at target is at Christian books. You can contact me on Facebook, Glenn Dorsey. You can go to my website, Glenndorsey.org and you can order the book there. Well, as well also I’ve written three other books yeah. That have emotional healing, healing, slants to them. So that’s how they can contact me.
Well, just one moment, let’s take this moment together and pray Glenn. And I just pray for that soul that is listening. Someone listening today hurts more than anyone else. And we pray, especially for that person, depression, anxiety, comparing themselves with others, that lying spirit of evil that Glenn heard. And many here we pray that they would find the voice of the heavenly father, a spiritual father and inner circle friends that would help to see them through help them on this journey. We pray in Jesus’ name and together we say, amen.
And I wanna thank you pal for taking time to hang out with us and be with us on The Influencers Podcast, please friends get a hold of this wonderful material. Maybe you’re a leader or, you know, a leader that’s going through inner turmoil and just needs the help for the influencers podcast. I’m Scott Young.