The word 'leader' can be so intimidating. It can be so weighty, so full of responsibility. As a speech-language pathologist, our endless "hats" on any given day include advocate, listener, comforter, teacher, counselor, and specialist. Embracing a leadership role or mentality on top of that can seem impossible. Nonetheless, leaders walk the hallways of schools, skilled nursing facilities, hospitals, homes, and clinics ensuring the heartbeat of these institutions is beating steady.
Walking the halls of my public elementary school, I don't always feel like a leader. Sometimes I'm asked to keep an eye on a class to give the teacher a minute to breathe. Sometimes I have to file paperwork in limited access folders. Sometimes I sit in on meetings in which I do not necessarily have any input. A leader is a team player, too. Someone who walks boldly in the understanding that it is not necessarily about having an official title, degree, or role. Someone who goes above and beyond their job description. I'm a leader, not because someone said so, but because my daily work proves it.