by Sandra Ford Walston
Personal courage is the way of one’s heart. It is a blending of heart and essence combined with the commitment to hold ourselves completely accountable for our actions. Applying courage consciousness, we must recognize that our spirit is the author of our fate.
As your courage consciousness matures at work, you will notice huge shifts in your perspective about fear, blame and how to achieve fulfillment in your work life, validating the choice of courage consciousness over attachments that trigger life’s emotional dramas.
Fear seems more powerful in times of doubt, tempting us to resort to blame as a defense mechanism, but as you develop a courageous mindset, you become more cognizant of the mental chatter that triggers your fears and the subtle cascades of blame that pollute your thoughts. Real estate developer Troy G. Smith says, “There is only one thing that thwarts people’s ability to display courage, and that is fear. Cowardice is fear, jealousy is fear, anger is fear, self-doubt is fear, lack of faith is fear, narrow-mindedness is fear, racism is fear, hate is fear. Fear is the antithesis of courage, no matter what form it takes.”
Most people do not push past certain boundaries, particularly the artificial boundaries of corrupt or unethical workplace standards. Reflecting an absence of courage consciousness, such standards drag us down and create inroads for self-doubt. Few organizations strive to become a “virtuous organization.” A virtuous organization develops a “Courageous Leadership Charter” that practices agreed upon courageous leadership behaviors while ethics-focused organizations provide knowledge of rules and regulations.
As you begin to design your own destiny and master a mix of courage action skills to overcome your personal obstacles, you amplify your level of courage consciousness and advance your career. Reflection, contemplation or meditation supports this process, allowing you to recognize and eliminate restrictive, deceptive thought patterns.
Former Caterpillar General Manager Curt L. Stowers summarizes his viewpoints on the importance of confronting obstacles at work: “The ‘easy’ approach is to nod one’s head and ignore the situation in hopes that it will somehow work out. The more courageous approach is to confront the issue and deal with the short-term discomfort.”
Four questions to ask yourself:
- Have you stepped up in your level of courage consciousness?
- What “insurmountable” obstacle has you stuck right now?
- How have you learned to merge self-actualization and courage consciousness at work?
- What has been the response or result?
She is the internationally published author of bestsellerCOURAGE The Heart and Spirit of Every Woman (2001), the follow-up book STUCK 12 Steps Up the LeadershipLadder (2010) and the recently released FACE IT! 12 Obstacles that Hold You Back on the Job (2011). She is certified in the Enneagram and MBTI®. Watch YouTube:FACE IT! | Twitter | Facebook