Recently I was at a dinner party where one of the guests was a kindergarten teacher. She was telling us about her work and how she uses affirmations with five- and six-year olds.

Every morning the children stand in a circle to start the day. The parents usually stay for this opening ritual and stand behind each child. The children cross their arms over their hearts, close their eyes and take a deep breath. The teacher gives thanks for a new day and asks the children to affirm with her the gifts they have inside. One child says, “I am healthy” and the others repeat, “I am healthy.” Another child continues with “I am capable” and the rest of the children echo, “I am capable.” They continue with “I am responsible,” “I love my friends,” “I am helpful” and so on.

Every day, these children remind each other of their inner greatness. They don’t simply repeat the words; they breathe them into the core of their being by focusing on their heart center.

Do you suppose this practice makes a difference in their ability to learn and grow, and their willingness to take on new challenges?

Great leaders constantly remind themselves and others that they have all the inner resources needed to accomplish their greatest destiny, even—or especially—in the face of adversity.

How do we lead people through change and create a movement in the direction we want to go?

Today a new form of leadership is emerging, beyond the old duality of leader/follower. Parents no longer tell their children to simply “do as I say.” No one wants to raise followers. Historically this hasn’t worked so well—memories of Hitler, communism and jihads come to mind.

Looking at our global political environment, no one in his right mind believes our governments alone can solve our problems; it will take every single one of us.

Our world needs leadership that breeds leaders, not followers, so that when things don’t turn out well, we don’t focus on blame but on taking responsibility and being accountable for turning things around.

In our business as in life, leadership is about leading people to find their own gifts and follow their truths, rather than getting them to do things our way.

Leaders don’t always need to have the answers, as long as they have the selflessness and presence of mind to let the answers come to and through them.

Today leadership is about authenticity, trust, empowerment and sustainability.

“Don’t conquer the peak; conquer yourself,” say the authors of High Altitude Leadership.

According to our women’s panel in this issue, leaders help people awaken to their own leadership and act on it; no profession does this better than network marketing.

Like the kindergarten teacher and the children, daily tune into your inner gifts and validate those gifts in others. Together let’s blueprint a new type of leadership that can inspire and change the world.

JOSEPHINE GROSS, PH.D. is Cofounder and Editor in Chief of Networking Times.