This post is the second in a two part article on listening to and answering your call to greatness. (Click here for Part I.) It is also an excerpt from my new book, The Pinocchio Principle: Becoming the Leader You Were Born to Be.
If you are ready to take your leap, I invite you to call me at (602) 889-2329 for a complimentary coaching session to see how I can support you through your transformation. Next week, I’ll post information about a new program I am rolling out specifically designed to help you bust through the barriers that keep you from your greatest work.
Taking Your Leap, Part II
Anytime you make a decision to go out of your comfort zone, to do something that is new or unusual for you, you will most likely experience a tinge of fear, hesitation, or anxiety. This fear may lead you to question your ability, your likelihood of succeeding, and the possibility of your demise – whatever that may mean for you. It is essential to realize that this fear is a part of your journey as a leader.
It is not necessary to overcome this fear. The key is to use it in ways that serve you, rather than hold you back. Remember the last time you stood on a high dive? You may have felt flip flops in your stomach or a strange surge of energy through your core. Perhaps you turned around and climbed back down. Or maybe you stepped forward, entered the unknown, and bravely leaped off the board.
After having done it once, depending on your experience, it may have been a bit easier for you to repeat the experience. As leaders, we are repeatedly called to dive into the unknown, in spite of our fears about it. We must use the fear to inform us of the dangers, and to provide us with data that will help us make good decisions. But we must not allow this fear to make our decisions for us.
Having faced our fear and moved forward in spite of it, the experience may be positive or negative. Regardless of the outcome, we must acknowledge the progress we have made. If our experience is less than desirable, we can evaluate it and learn from it. Having had the experience, we are wiser for it – far more than we would be if we simply continued to contemplate taking that leap or safely learn from the experience of others instead. And if we are successful, we can build on this experience and use it as a platform for further growth.
There will always be an abundance of people who will tell you why things cannot be done, what there is to fear, and why it is just not worth the risk. Let them speak, but do not be swayed by their doubt. It is based on their own experience of the world, not yours. If you are to lead, you must set the example for others so that they can see that even when you take a risk and fail, you have moved forward and began progress in a direction that would have otherwise been stunted. If you believe you cannot succeed, you may be right. But if you believe you can, you are halfway there.
When was the last time you took a risk to experience something that has been calling to you – something that you know in your heart is for your highest good (and that of others as well)? What happened when you did? What did you learn? And how have you grown as a result?
What is calling to you now? And what small, sweet step can you take to bring you closer to experiencing the exhilaration of moving bravely in a direction that might just take you and others around you to a new level of mastery?
For more on taking your leap: