It may be the best of times or the worst of times – but it is the only time we have.

The poor economy, cut-backs on spending, staff reductions and other types of belt-tightening certainly don’t herald the best of times. Nevertheless, as a leader, you can take actions to ensure that some good comes out of the country’s economic crisis. Tough times offer opportunities for personal action and transformation. So instead of lamenting about the impact and length of the crisis ask:

· What can I do to help the less fortunate in my community? Then, do it: today

· What am I projecting during these difficult times – darkness or light? What else can I do to help those on my team keep their spirits up when the mood is down? Then act immediately and keep it up.

· Where can I direct my attention to make the most positive impact? And – a second and just as important question: How willing am I to invest my time and energy without expecting recognition or a return of any kind?

· How will these difficult times change me? What do I need to do to live my life differently? Do I need to rethink old/outdated personal motivators? How can I live my values in a way that feeds my spirit and inspires followers?

Yes, I know, it is an old cliché, but valid just the same: What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger!