Courage in 2017

(2 minute read)
As 2017 draws to a close, I am reflecting on my courageous acts of this year. Interestingly, and yet not surprisingly, the courageous acts of others come to mind easily, and yet my own, not so much. Might it be humility? Might it be that I consider the things I do as just the things I do and not consider them to be courageous? My inner critic makes itself heard at this point with, “Perhaps you haven’t been at all courageous this year?!”
This leads me to the importance of asking others for their feedback, for their perspective. Asking two, three or four others a question such as, “Might you think about something I did this year, just one thing, that you thought was courageous?”
Asking for this feedback might be, in and of itself, a courageous act.  My inner critic starts up again, interfering with questions such as:
  • What will they think of you asking for such feedback?
  • Have you got tickets on yourself?
  • What if they can’t think of even one courageous act?! Then you’ll be sorry …
So, ask that inner critic to be quiet (you may need to be quite assertive in the asking!). Engage your inner coach. Replace the negative inner critic with your supportive and fair inner coach who wants you to grow, offering questions and comments such as:
  • Asking for feedback will help build my self-awareness.
  • I can’t wait to hear what they have to say.
  • I wonder what I will learn about myself?
  • I wonder where these conversations may lead?
  • In return, I will reflect on and offer my observations of a courageous act for each of them.
Asking for feedback builds self awareness and awareness of others for all parties involved; it builds trust and relationships; it promotes growth. Exploring and understanding your own courageous acts and those of others is inspiring; it enables further courageous acts; and contributes positively to wellbeing.
So, what are you waiting for? I hope you’re thinking about who you might ask for feedback of your courageous acts in 2017.  I’ve thought about mine; I’ll let you know how I get on.
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