Leading from the Inside Out

The Art of Self-Leadership

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Too many stories have been told of successful leaders who fail in their private lives and consequently neutralize their vocational achievements. Leadership expert Sam Rima believes the time has come for leaders to exercise the same skill and degree of leadership in their personal lives as they do in their organizations.

Despite strong advances in organizational leadership, a key growth area is still lacking for many: self-leadership. Addressing this evident need, Rima offers practical implementation of essential leadership principles and discusses the emotional, intellectual, physical, and spiritual aspects of self-leadership.

Pastors, church leaders, and all Christians who serve in positions of leadership or authority will benefit from Rima's insights. Leading from the Inside Out is also a useful tool for leadership classes, as well as church boards and denominational leaders who want to help those they oversee prevent personal failures. The book includes a study guide and a Self-Leadership Workshop at the end of each chapter.


"In his previous book, Overcoming the Dark Side of Leadership, Sam Rima puts us in his debt by showing us obstacles that hinder our leadership and by giving us reliable guidance in how to overcome those challenges. In this new book, Leading from the Inside Out, Rima takes us to the inner foundations essential for eduring leadership that is able both to withstand attacks from without and to maintain the integrity and equilibrium of the person within."
--Dr. George K. Brushaber, president, Bethel College & Seminary

"Dr. Sam Rima is right on the mark. Practical and compelling, Leading from the Inside Out is a great read for anyone who wants to get serious about all aspects of personal leadership."
--Congressman John Thune, R-South Dakota, U.S. House of Representatives

"In this day of interactive media, Dr. Samuel Rima has produced an important contribution on the subject of leadership. Leading from the Inside Out spells out not only important principles but also makes it easy to interact with those principles. I especially appreciate the emphasis on character as there seems to be continually increasing disengagement between character and leadership. This book is well worth reading for those in leadership which, in my opinion, would include all as everyone exerts some level of leadership."
--Dr. Clyde Cook, president, Biola University

"One of the results of living in a postmodern age is people who struggle with managing their own lives. Both within and without the church, it is clear that a large number of people need to get back to the basics of learning how to balance their physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual selves. Leading from the Inside Out provides a practical and biblical hands-on resource for assisting all of us to lead our own lives, and those of others, for the glory of God."
--Dr. Gary L. McIntosh, professor, Talbot School of Theology, Biola University

"Sam Rima has written a vital book for our time! It is a must read for every person who seeks to influence others. I know I was strengthened personally by reading it!"
--Pam Farrel, author and president of Masterful Living

"This is not a book to merely read but a book to do. Grab your journal and your creative thinking to gain some true self insights as you work your way through Leading from the Inside Out. Sam Rima's self revelation and discipline sets a strong model for other leaders in this book."
--Dr. Chuck Hiatt, president, North American Baptist Seminary

"Anyone who is concerned about personal leadership will be challenged and richly blessed by this wise, insightful book. Sam Rima shares deeply out of his rich experiences--including his struggles--as a pastor. And he has obviously read widely and been mentored by leaders whom he trusts. The specific personal exercises at the end of each section are very helpful. All kinds of church leaders--actual and potential--need to read this book and take it to heart."
--Dr. Roger L. Fredrikson, former president, American Baptist Churches

"Sam Rima has stepped into the gap and addressed the most important leadership issue of our day--the discipline of self-leadership. Many have written on the need for character and integrity in leadership, but few have provided a clear path for personal development that is genuinely helpful. Dr. Rima's book, Leading from the Inside Out, provides that path in a way that is insightful, practical, and wise."
--Dr. Jerry Sheveland, vice president, Global Church Enrichment, Baptist General Conference

"Each day we're a day closer to becoming the persons and leaders we'll ultimately be. That can be a frightening prospect--unless we're intentionally mastering the art of self-leadership now. The decisions and actions Sam Rima advocates in his newest book provide a fundamental structure for leaders to build personal integrity for the long haul as they serve God and his people."
--Pamela Heim, director, Baptist General Conference Women's Ministries

"In today's economically-driven society, Sam Rima offers readers an opportunity to refocus our eyes, ears, and heart on who we are in Christ. Simply put, this book compels the reader to base his/her leadership style on a biblical frame of reference."
--Dr. Mark Benedetto, president, University of Sioux Falls

"Dr. Rima's book on self-leadership is insightful, thorough, and relevant to everyone serving in positions of leadership. He clearly shows the strong relationship between personal and occupational leadership and its impact on success as a leader. Dr. Rima is a gifted writer who has the ability to state his position clearly and persuasively. This book should be required reading for individuals who serve in leadership roles regardless of whether they work in a secular or non-secular organization."
--Dr. Tom McClung, interim dean, College of Information Sciences and Technology, University of Nebraska, Omaha

The Author

  1. Samuel D. Rima

    Samuel D. Rima

    Samuel D. Rima is director of the Doctor of Ministry program at Bethel Seminary, where he is also a faculty member in the Center for Transformational Leadership. He is the author of Leading from the Inside Out and Rethinking the Successful Church.

    Continue reading about Samuel D. Rima


"This is a smooth blend of scriptural truths, modern psychology tidbits, and self-help rolled into one timeless message: In the long run, you can't lead better than you live."--CBA Marketplace (May 2000)

"Leading from the Inside Out is a valuable book for anyone who aspires to leadership, inside or outside the church. Rima provides a basic foundation that will serve the leader well throughout his or her career and life."--CBA Marketplace (June 17, 2000)