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:
This week’s post is the first of a two part article on listening to and answering your call to greatness. 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. Stay tuned to hear more about a new program I am getting ready to roll out specifically designed to help you bust through the barriers that keep you from your greatest work.
Taking Your Leap, Part I
The call to something bigger is often ushered in by a period of discomfort, where one slowly begins to realize that the outer world does not match the inner one. We may begin to feel a sort of incongruence accompanied by increasing awareness of our current course of events and what it is all for. A greater purpose looms in the background, but the way things are set up doesn’t quite allow that vision to live. And so it is time for a change.
Some call this an awakening. Others call it a crisis. It is a doorway to greater meaning and contribution, and the beginning of a transformation that happens from the inside out.
Many of us have spent a great deal of our lives trying to live up to what we believe others expect of us. When what others want for us is consistent with what we want for ourselves, this approach is satisfying. Often though, we begin to become aware of the ways in which this approach may no longer serve us.
People, events, or behaviors that used to give us pleasure no longer seem to be enough. Sometimes they become downright anxiety producing. We may begin to question what it is all for. In these times of despair and doubt, if we pay attention to our anxiety and move into it (rather than away from it), we can begin to ascertain the messages it brings to us. When we are destined for something bigger than what we are currently experiencing, the old must lose its appeal before we will make the bold move into something new.
If this is happening to you, do not be disheartened. Simply cultivate awareness and begin to ask yourself the kinds of questions that will empower you to know what you must do next. Questions such as, “What can I do right now to make the most of this situation?” or “How can I reframe what I am seeing so that I get the bigger picture?” can be very illuminating, as they allow us to focus on answers that are often right in front of us.
Don’t be afraid of the answers. You don’t necessarily have to quit your job, change your career or reinvent your whole life to usher in what you are on the brink of. But you will need to begin to see it all a little differently and begin to give heed to inklings, urges and what you may think are just crazy ideas that keep coming to you again and again.
Pay attention to the recurrent dreams and visions you find yourself engaging in. What is it that you have always wanted to do, but for one reason or another have never acted on? Perhaps now is the time to take some small steps to give those ideas life.
For more on taking your leap: