When you are a leader - and everyone reading this is, or at some point will be, a leader, you cannot think of yourself if you want your leadership to be serious and true. You have to think of others.
And that's why you have to lead by example. You cannot lead by how you feel or whether or not you've had a bad day or because you want people to like you.
You have to lead the way a good leader leads.
That means doing a lot of things you'd rather not do. There are days when you'd rather be on the couch or in the gym or at a bar, but you have to 'go see." You've got to have frank talks with nice people and more than your share with unpleasant ones. You have to catch your own mistakes and question - at least silently - the advice you've been getting.
You have to be "out among 'em" and yet not too close because you are no longer really one of them.
You have to think broadly and far ahead while noticing the nearby details that may contain snares.
You'll get into high-altitude substantial topics, of course, but there will be many small and subtle moments.
And amid all of the doing and knowing, you have to exemplify a genuine person who can be trusted to do the right thing or to correct it when it needs correction.
In order to lead by example, you cannot just act out the example. You have to be the example and that job of being is one of constant growth.
Which never ends.