Creating brave careers is so much easier when we act from a place of clarity, purpose and conviction.
“I feel like my secret magic trick that separates me from a lot of my peers
is the bravery to be vulnerable and truthful and honest.” – Katy Perry
All to often when we think of bravery we think of once off heroic acts…. Firefighters who run into burning buildings; the person who jumps into the rising flood waters to save a child in danger; or the whistleblower who takes a very public stance to report corruption in the workplace.
But the truth is there is no such thing as a small act of bravery. Responding to situations and making decisions – no matter how big or small – when there are no guaranteed results requires brave thinking and brave action.
We currently live and operate in times that crave a higher degree of bravery. Everywhere we turn there is a huge cry in our communities and businesses for a return to genuine authenticity, transparency and engagement. However the truth is, we can’t do any of these things without the bravery to be vulnerable, truthful and honest. To really show up, interact and give things our all.
As leaders (both or our own careers and the businesses we lead) we need to continually push things up a notch, question and challenge the ‘status quo’ and always strive to maintain and develop new standards of excellence. We need to feel comfortable with the fact that we won’t always have all of the answers; in stepping out of our comfort zone and we need to stop treading that same, familiar safe path. When we do we will drive both our careers and our businesses forward to new levels of success and create future opportunities.
When facing big decisions, new challenges or a changed environment, the saying ‘we are our own worst enemies’ often rings true for many of us. At the heart of it is fear – fear of failure, fear of what others think, fear of not being good enough. The expectations, limitations and fears that circle in our minds so often stop us maximizing not only our current opportunity but also our true capability.
Changing career paths, taking on a bigger or more diverse role, proposing new ways of doing business, voicing an opinion that is not shared by the consensus or standing up publicly to share your thoughts and views all requires a high degree of internal strength, conviction and bravery.
The reality is being brave can be hard. It is often much easier to sit back and do what we have always done and coast along than to do something different that might expose us to the world. Ironically though it is this very exposure that you need to progress and develop any real value in your career and business.
The good news is that bravery is something that we are all capable of. It has little to do with status, position, title or income. We can all choose to live bravely in what we do on a daily basis. Below are a couple of tips to help you do just that:
Most of us don’t think of ourselves as brave. I believe every brave thing we do in life counts. It’s time we stood tall and claimed our bold and audacious selves and used – as Katy Perry says in the quote above – our secret magic trick to set us apart. . For it is only when we do that we will gain the confidence to continually live bravely.
Margot – The Career Diplomat
The roots of courageous leadership are firmly planted in self awareness, ownership and accountability.
Work on strengthening two different aspects of resilience.
When at a career crossroads, give yourself room to imagine what’s possible without any guilt.
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