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“The world is desperate for braver leaders”
– Brené Brown
It’s time to embrace the suck and learn to step up
Sound harsh? Maybe. But if you’ve read, seen, or listened to anything by Brené Brown, you know she doesn’t mince words. It’s part of the reason I align a lot of the work I do with hers. And, if you know me, you know I don’t hold back, especially when I believe in something.
Let’s get ready to rumble!
“You can’t get to courage without rumbling with vulnerability. Embrace the suck.”
– Brené Brown
“Rumbling with vulnerability” is a funny way to describe the wrestling moves we need to pull with ourselves to get comfy with making things we care about vulnerable to others – saying something that we know isn’t popular, calling someone out on their BS, offering an idea that might make us sound like we’re off our rocker. It’s far easier to not rock the boat, but what fun would that be? And how will we grow if we keep doing what we’ve always done? It wouldn’t and we won’t. Yes, it sucks sometimes, but you and I both know that growth can be a little painful and every day can’t be full of rainbows and puppy dogs.
Figure out what you care about and don’t do things that don’t feel right
You might be scared to think about becoming more vulnerable – it feels uncomfortable to be ‘naked’ (for most people). But your greatest barrier to courageous leadership isn’t your fear, it’s what you do with it. If we let our go-to thoughts, emotions, and behaviours keep us comfy in our status quo, we end up doing things that disregard the things that really matter – our values – and eroding trust with people we care about.
Courage is about doing things that have risk, and taking risks is scary. Such is life! The trick is to learn and practice it a bit at a time until it becomes comfortable.
You can’t move a mountain by yourself
One person learning to show up as who they truly are is great (it’s fantastic, actually!), but it won’t move mountains. Real (big) change happens in organizations only when courage spreads. Only organizations that have many courageous people, that teach courage, and that expect it, will excel, at least in authentic ways.
If you’ve ever been charged with changing culture, you know that it’s damned near impossible unless you have many, many people on board, and the authority to take big, bold actions. True large-scale culture change happens very rarely. Unless people are expected to show up as their whole selves, and get down and dirty to solve problems and have tough conversations, cultural transformation just doesn’t happen.
This sounds hard, but I’m intrigued
Yes, the work is hard. Yes, it takes commitment. And yes, it’s what I specialize in! I work with leaders to become even better than they are, or unstuck from whatever ‘goo’ they find themselves in. This idea of developing courage, to face life head on, rather than ducking underneath challenges or staying quiet when we have something to say, is one of the most powerful pieces of work I bring to my clients.
As a Certified Dare to LeadTM Facilitator, I teach others (leaders, in-tact teams, Human Resource pros, Learning and Development advisors) to become DTL-Accredited in these extraordinary tools! The whole idea being that one person or a whole team learns the practices of courage-building and brings it to their organization to spread it throughout.