From his book Winning with People, John Maxwell (who I think is one of a small handful of people who really understand leadership) takes a look at some principles that address victory over self. Here’s one that I think is a gem:
Who we are determines how we see others. This principle says once we get our own act together, we will be able to help others get their acts together. It’s impossible, if I am an unhealthy leader, to have healthy followers. I have to fix myself. We don’t see others as they are; we see others as we are, because each of us has his or her own bent and that colors our view of everything. What is around us doesn’t determine what we see. What is within us does. For example, if I am an untrusting person, how you think I will see you? I will see you as untrustworthy. So anything that is unhealthy about me is going to spill onto you. That is what leaders have to understand. But as a leader, if I can get victory over myself, if I can fix John Maxwell, the odds are high I can help and fix others.