What courage is required of us in our personal and professional lives? So often, the courage that is required in our personal lives intersects with the courage required in our professional lives, yet we don’t see or necessarily realise, how. Quite often, our realisation about our need for courage commences in our professional life – something occurs in a professional setting or an external environment that alerts us to the need for managing a challenge and/or a change.
Quite often, we contextualise courage in the sense of needing courage ‘in the face of others’ because ‘they’ have caused the circumstance in which we find ourselves. But as adults, how often do we take these circumstances and have the courage to face ourselves, and our thoughts/beliefs/behaviours/actions that may have co-contributed to this situation?
If indeed we do have the courage to do that, to face ourselves and our hidden foibles that we often like to disguise or keep from ourselves, then arguably in that moment, we are demonstrating the best courage of all: to face ourselves, to know ourselves and to take responsibility for ourselves. There may always be external situations that simply do just ‘occur’ that absolutely require courage ‘in the face of’ that situation. But once we can have the courage to truly engage in getting to know ourselves, the nature of the courage we need to face any external situation will change, because we ourselves have changed.
I used to pride myself on my courage in situations – I was a fighter, a rebel who would go head to head with people and government entities in order to prove what was truthful. But I had to then have the courage to face myself and realise that my way of approaching these matters – through adrenalin and anger – was co-contributing to the lack of positive results.
Over time, I came to realise why I did ‘fight’ like that, made my peace with it, and then learned to engage with circumstances with a more diplomatic and tempered approach. I had to have the courage to say to myself that although I didn’t think ‘their’ way was the right way, ‘my way’ wasn’t necessarily the right way either. And from there, some change did indeed and thankfully occurred!