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Courage - Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone

Comfort in change

For those who know me or have ever experienced a training session with me, you would know that my favorite word in the English language is the word, COURAGE. I’m not sure where it began or where I latched onto this word, I just remember researching the meaning of the word and what I found resonated with me. Courage is the willingness to do something that is uncomfortable because the end result is worth it. You’ve heard the expression that we need to “lean in” or we should do something that makes us feel uncomfortable every day.

It stretches us beyond our comfort zone – and that’s where the learning begins. Whether it be that we need courage during a difficult conversation or we need courage to try something new, courage is key.

It is often said that courage isn’t the absence of fear, but rather the ability to act despite it. Embracing discomfort and facing challenges head-on can lead to personal growth and achievement. It’s through these experiences that we often find our greatest strengths and abilities. Reflect on this for a moment. When we look back to those things that made us uncomfortable, they are most likely comfortable now. At the time, these things were scary and uncomfortable. You found the strength, your dug deep into your confidence and chose to face those feelings straight on. Courage is an essential quality for a leader. Here are some reasons why courage is valuable.

  • Decision Making: Leaders are often required to make tough decisions that can have a significant impact on their team or organization. Having the courage to make these decisions, even when they are unpopular or difficult, is crucial.

  • Effective Risk Taking: Leadership often involves taking calculated risks. This could involve launching a new product, entering a new market, or implementing a major change within the organization. Courageous leaders are willing to step out of their comfort zones and take these risks.

  • Poised for Change: In a rapidly changing world, leaders need the courage to adapt to new circumstances and technologies. This might involve changing long-standing practices or strategies, and it requires the ability to embrace uncertainty.

  • Conflict Resolution: Courageous leaders are not afraid to address conflicts or difficult conversations within their team. They're willing to confront issues head-on and work towards a resolution, even if it means facing discomfort or resistance.

  • Innovation: Encouraging innovation often requires leaders to be open to new and unconventional ideas. This takes courage, as it means being willing to challenge established norms and try new approaches.

  • Integrity and Values: A courageous leader stands up for what they believe is right, even in the face of opposition. This might involve advocating for ethical behavior, diversity and inclusion, or other important values.

  • Learning from Mistakes: Failure is an inevitable part of any leadership role. Courageous leaders are not afraid of failure; they see it as an opportunity to learn and grow.

  • Being a Positive Role Model: A courageous leader sets the tone for their team. When team members see their leader taking bold and courageous actions, it can inspire them to do the same. When a leader demonstrates courage, it can inspire their team to take similar risks and embrace challenges. This creates a culture of bravery and resilience within the organization.

In summary, courage is a cornerstone of effective leadership. It enables leaders to make difficult decisions, take risks, and navigate challenges with resilience. It sets the tone for the entire organization and can inspire teams to achieve great things.

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