Do you consider yourself brave? It is not an easy quality to maintain. Bravery asks a lot – going into new and unknown situations, stepping out of your comfort zone, daring to fail, stretching yourself. As hard as it may be, bravery has bountiful rewards – adventure, growth, finding new frontiers, confidence.
Be brave. The world is a better place when you are.
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Fear is unpleasant and disconcerting. It can show up in life and work, with people you love and those you don’t, in unfamiliar situations and because other people are promoting it.
If you don’t like feeling fear, make sure not to feed it. Fear can get a grip on you very quickly. It has a power of its own and takes courage and strength to deal with. Learn to recognize and understand your fear. Once it shows up, find ways to stop it, rather than letting it grow.
You can stop fear in many ways: by grounding in the present moment and looking at the cause of your fear and by finding techniques to deal with it such as employing ways to calm yourself down, engaging in physical exercise or identifying the usual causes of your fear and addressing them directly.
The next time you feel fear best to stop it, rather than feed it. Fear slows you down and scares you. Your life and work are better off without it.
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Sometimes, you can think that by resisting something you are protecting yourself and standing up to others. How can that be true when your stance is rigid and oppositional? Resistance often distills down to avoidance – not facing something straight on.
Say someone is asking you to do something that you fear doing or do not want to do. You put your energy into resisting doing it. This can take many forms: conflict, discomfort, putting your head in the sand. How about, instead, you face the situation head-on and make a choice whether you will or will not do what is asked? In doing so, you resolve any concerns you have and do not have to deal with the energy drain involved in resistance.
Resistance is wasted time and does not serve you. Instead of resisting, move forward. Responding is much more effective than reacting. In resisting you are only hurting yourself.
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Fear can turn you around in many ways. When you feel fear you can lose perspective, courage and power. Fear can come from within or from things outside you (some use fear to control and manipulate others). It serves you to have a way of dealing with fear when it shows up in your life and work.
What is your natural reaction to fear? Do you hide, try to tackle it, get defensive? Know your natural reaction to fear. Then, identify a way of dealing with fear that serves your interests. Doing this makes a big difference. You will be able to maintain your perspective, courage and power, no matter what comes along.
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Sometimes, you must stand up for yourself or risk getting run over. Discerning when to stand up and when you can let something slide is an important skill to cultivate. Here are some things to consider when you are deciding whether or not to stand up for yourself:
• Where do your interests lie in the situation? Is it important to protect them?
• Who or what is creating this situation? Are they or it trying to harm you in any way?
• Is there a reason to let this slide that outweighs your self-interest? (For example, a greater benefit to you or a consequence that can harm you)
• Is fear involved?
• What are you “saying” to others by either standing up or not doing so?
Standing up for yourself can be a powerful act. Do it wisely when it is in your interest to do so.
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Is there a place that you can “jump” to right now? An area to which you, or a team that you manage, can take a leap forward? Opportunities to jump are always in front of you. Sometimes you see them and sometimes you do not. When you see an opportunity, summon your courage, prepare and jump! You won’t regret it.
You are meant to be in action and that goes for your career as well. Not much gets done when you are at a standstill. Look around you, where do you see an opportunity to jump?
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Flight has its beauty. It also has its downside. Sometimes, you are face to face with your fears or something you are experiencing seems to be way too much to handle. The fight-or-flight response is a physiological reaction that occurs in response to a perceived harmful event, attack, or threat to survival. It was first described by Walter Bradford Cannon.
In your work life, when you face fear or uncomfortable situations, they can threaten some aspect of your emotional or mental make-up, your sense of security or your sense of self. Stress can trigger the fight-or-flight response. Flight in the face of fear can cause you harm. Facing the situation is the best way to resolve it. It takes strength and courage and you can grow in the process.
The next time your immediate response to fear or an uncomfortable situation is flight, take the time to look at and assess what is happening. After doing so, it may not be as threatening as you first thought it was and you can handle it or you may realize you can benefit by staying put. If that is not the case, you can choose to steadily walk away, knowing exactly why you are choosing to do so.
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Stubborn: having or showing dogged determination not to change one’s attitude or position on something, especially in spite of good arguments or reasons to do so.
What’s the impact of stubbornness in the workplace? Stubbornness slows things down. It causes arguments and clashes. But stubbornness does not always exist in the face of good arguments or reasons. Sometimes, stubbornness is due to the courage of a person’s convictions or fault lines that exist in others’ arguments or reasoning.
Are you stubborn? How do you respond to the stubbornness of others? An accusation of stubbornness can be subjective, as who is to say whether one’s attitude or position goes against reason or facts? Perhaps the best way to deal with stubbornness in yourself or others is to ignore its presence and continue on to the center of an issue by keeping dialogue going and working to understand others’ positions. Stubbornness is an obstacle you are better off without.
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