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Home > About > eConnect Newsletter > President Farewell

Leading Through Adversity: #LoveTheJourney

by Heather Ozur, PMN, 2019 National President

Whether at home, in Chicago, or at association events for Women’s Council or NAR, I start off most mornings the same way: with a pre-dawn run. It could be 5 miles, 10 miles, 13.1 miles-each day is different. While I primarily do it for fitness and health, there’s more to running than that. Like my Women’s Council experience, I do it because I love the journey. Running takes grit, passion and tenacity – the same qualities shared by you, the amazing leaders at Women’s Council of REALTORS®

To those who have shared the Women’s Council journey this year, we led through change and adversity. We accomplished many goals and also laid the groundwork for a successful future. However, this article is not the laundry list of work that has been accomplished! If you want to learn about that, visit this link. 

What has been learned along the leadership journey this year?

  1. Mistakes happen. Things are never flawless! Change, leadership, challenges--these qualities shape us as leaders and can often result in missteps. Nothing is ever perfect, and nothing is what it seems on the surface. It’s like the iceberg photo in this article. You only see the surface; what you don’t see what happens beneath the surface, the rest of the story. There are challenges, sacrifices, and battle scars. These all shape us into individually beautiful and unique leaders.  

  2. Leadership is tested in times of adversity. Ideally, in the leadership journey, the vision board comes to life in a perfect and scripted way. The reality is that our leadership journey is often interrupted by adversity, while the ability to overcome adversity is leadership. I’ve experienced challenges with my health and my personal life during the height of my leadership journey at Women’s Council. This has been offset by joy as well as precious personal moments. The ability to “keep it going” at times of adversity was a leadership experience and lesson that has raised me up and has taken me in a new direction. I’ve learned and grown along the way. Embrace YOUR setbacks.

  3. Curiosity versus Judgement. In today’s social media culture, we develop quick reads on people as we scroll through our timelines. We make instant assumptions about someone’s social life, societal status, thoughts, and feelings. However, there is always more to an individual's story than an online presence or the person you meet briefly at a meeting. When you interact with others, you may not know what chapter of someone’s life is transpiring. No one’s life story is ever as simple or perfect as a social media post! When you interact with people, ask yourself the following question: “Am I coming from judgment or curiosity?” No one you will meet is perfect. Ask questions! Take a genuine interest. Come from a position of curiosity versus judgment. You will find more joy and strengthen your interactions with others.  

  4. Comparison is the thief of joy. This is one of my favorite sayings! The leadership journey you take is yours and yours only. It will not be better or worse than others. It will neither look nor feel like anyone else’s. Make sure you don’t compare your journey to others. 

It has been a pleasure to serve the Women’s Council of REALTORS® and serve with an amazing leadership team. Most of all, I hope you have all been able to grow, change and learn at Women’s Council. Give back. Go on the leadership journey. Enjoy the successes and embrace the challenges. 


Above all:
Live Authentically
Learn Constantly
Advocate Fiercely