Keep Your Fire Burning

We’re only silenced by our refusal to keep our fire lit.” – Martin Sheen, World Leaders Conference

Campfire burning brightly beside a campsite at nightThat fire inside you, burning bright – it’s what keeps you up all night or rising first thing in the morning. That fire is the passion you hold for a change. That’s core to your leadership. Without that fire, you’re just another person with another idea. With that fire, you are a force to reckon with, a wind of change, a person on a mission. Therefore, you must keep that fire lit, at all costs.

There are two ways you can lose that fire…

Consuming All Fuel

Whether it is oxygen or timber, if you burn through all your fuel, without replenishing it, your fire will burn out. You control your source of fuel. What is your source of fuel? Do you remind yourself regularly of the wrongs you seek to right? Do you put yourself in the shoes of stakeholders? If you allow too much time to pass without refueling your motivation, your flame could burn out.


Whether by water or soil, if your flame is smothered, it will expire. There are plenty of people trying to smother your flame. Whether it is competitors or internal politics – people will want to see you fail. How do you guard against these “smotherers”? Do you insulate yourself with like-minded individuals and other servant leaders? Do you burn your fire brighter, so it’s harder to smother?

Martin Sheen was right. Leaders today must protect their fire or risk being silenced. Be careful to guard your flame.

Question: How do you keep your fire lit?



Picture of Ben Lichtenwalner

Ben Lichtenwalner

Ben Lichtenwalner is the founder and principal of Modern Servant Leader and Radiant Forest, LLC. He has studied and promoted servant leadership awareness and adoption for over 20 years. He is the author of 2 leadership books and has 2 decades of corporate management and leadership experience. His corporate experience spans CIO, VP, Director, and many management roles at Fortune 500, INC 500, and Nonprofits. Ben’s education includes a B.S. in Management Science & Information Systems from Penn State University and an MBA from Lehigh University. Ben's Full Profile Here: About Ben Lichtenwalner

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