Courage, thought and the leader
Courage. Observers find this quality in great leaders, yet we know that leaders with courage are not strangers to fear. A person can make a brave choice, and know powerful fear at the same time. We remember the leader for courage, yet fear may have been present.
Somehow, a courageous act propels one beyond the immobilization felt when fear grips the heart. Leaders know this dilemma, and take the bold act. We celebrate leaders when the courageous step makes a difference, hastening a better world.
Even understanding the world around us can be an act of courage. I think sometimes our ego acts to hide us from information that doesn’t support our vision of ourselves. It’s natural, our image protection system (that’s the ego) finds ways to shield us from negative news. The world can be hard, and the effective person must learn to deal with truth. The ego is not a good mirror of the world, it will show us the world as we want it to be.
A courageous person challenges the ego, applies critical thinking, and looks at the world as it is. “Tomorrow’s greatest leaders are those with the courage to face reality and help the people around them face reality,” said Harvard professor Ronald Heifetz. Courage may involve challenging conventional thinking and helping others to do the same.
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