On May 14, we will celebrate Mother’s Day, a holiday dedicated to the women who raised us, love us and always support us. Our mothers are our first nurturers, friends and role models. They teach us life’s most important lessons: how to walk, talk, tie our shoes and drive. The lessons we have learned from our mothers our entire lives serve us well as leaders.
Always say please and thank you. When your mom was constantly reminding you to mind your manners, she was not just ensuring you were a polite child. She was teaching you to respect others and value their help. As a leader, it is so important to show appreciation to those who serve with you and help the chapter run efficiently. A thoughtful thank you can go a long way, and a thank you note is even better.
Everyone has to do their part. Whether that meant setting the table or unloading the dishwasher, your mom taught you that she needed your contributions to make the house run smoothly. The same is true for running your chapter. From the chapter president to committee assistants, everyone has a part to play to ensure the success of the Sorority.
Treat others as you would want to be treated. You probably heard it a hundred times growing up. The Golden Rule seems to be all mothers’ go to advice for playdates and school, but it is the Golden Rule for a reason. Remember how you felt when an older member took an interest in you? Remember how patient your advisors were when you made a mistake? Leaders work with members from diverse backgrounds and experiences. Especially when the going gets tough, remember to treat your members how you wanted to be treated when you were in their shoes.
Be a good listener. Whether your mother was giving you instructions or dropping you off at school, she usually had to remind you to stop talking and start listening. Learning to be a good and active listener is one of the most important skills you can cultivate as a leader. From being a good audience for your friends’ stories to hearing and truly understanding a sister’s problems, listening is the best way to show you care. Plus, as all good mothers and leaders know, recognizing what someone may need without them saying a word is just as important as hearing what they say.
By Mary Carol Butterfield (Georgia)
Originally from Greenville, South Carolina, Mary Carol joined Gamma Phi Beta at the Delta Upsilon Chapter at the University of Georgia. Mary Carol is a journalism and political science major with a passion for writing, traveling and college football. She has served as ritual chairwoman, new member educator assistant and attended the 2016 Gamma Phi Beta Convention in Atlanta. Living in Delta Upsilon’s beautiful house has been Mary Carol’s favorite part of being in Gamma Phi. From Saturday brunches with all the girls in the house to mattress surfing down the stairs, living in 397 was a dream come true.