Once there lived a young boy who enjoyed eating sweets. He would have sweets for breakfast, lunch and dinner. All he ate was sweet. This habit was not healthy for him, and his parents knew about his bad habit and wanted him to stop it. His mother often told him that overeating sugar is harmful to his health. However, the young boy did not listen to his mother and continued binge-eating sweets since he was hooked on them.
Since the young boy did not follow his mother’s instructions, his mother decided to seek assistance from a knowledgeable and respected sage who resided in the next village. Society greatly respected him, and the boy appreciated and idealised him. So she took his son to the location where the Saint was staying, hoping the boy would follow his advice.
The trek to see the Saint was long since they had to walk miles in the scorching heat.
A long line of people was eager to greet the Saint when they arrived. Finally, after several hours of waiting, the mother and boy met the Saint.
The mother asked the wise Saint to advise and warn her son about the hazards of overeating sweets.
“I can’t tell him that just now,” the Saint said. “But please bring him back in a month, and then I will talk to him!”
Hearing this, the mother was confused and upset that Saint did not give any solution right away. But he was the wise Saint, and if he told us to wait, she reasoned and convinced herself, he must have something special up his sleeve to keep her kid from eating too many sweets. Both returned home.
They returned to see the Saint after a month.
“Young guy, you should quit consuming too many sweets since it is bad for your health,” Saint remarked this time. Listen to and obey your mother.”
The boy agreed.
The mother was a little annoyed and asked the Saint, “Why didn’t you say that to him last time when I got him here?”
“Mother, last time you visited, I had the habit of consuming a lot of sweets myself,” the Saint grinned. I couldn’t advise him what to do because I hadn’t done it myself. However, I’ve been eating fewer sweets for the past month and have felt considerably better. So now I can tell him to do what I was able to put into action and follow.”
Moral: Practice what you preach. People are more likely to follow and listen to you when your words and action align. leaders much lead by example. When someone possesses integrity, they command respect and gain influence. People will have more faith in you if you lead the way.