Fear can be paralyzing. It can stop us in our track. It can be on of the most powerful things to keep us from doing something. There are some fears that are actually good, such as our primal fight or flight reactions to real danger or something that can kill us.
But outside of that, most fears are made up in own minds and can hold us prisoners.
There is something, however that is worse than fear and that is missing an opportunity or chance to reach your true potential because of it. How many people have never stepped out of their comfort zone or took the chance on a great opportunity because of fear. You've probably had a moment in your life where you had an opportunity that came to you that your gut said "Go for it," but then your brain started working it's fear, what if scenarios, and giving you all the reasons not to move forward - so you didn't - and you kick yourself every time you think about it. And that leads to guilt and other feelings that further manipulate and make our success path harder.
What, if for just one time, you took the chance? You threw off the fear and just took the opportunity (whatever it is)? What could happen? Most importantly, what is the real worst case that could happen? First, you could fail...so, what failure happens all the time and it won't stop you from anything in the long run. Second, your worst case scenario could happen (the percentages say it won't), but even if it did, how bad is it really? Remove the emotion that fear creates and use your logic to see through it.
Missed opportunities are worse than fear and the sad thing is that most people miss a lot of great opportunities in their lives because they let fear win. Don't be one of these people. Take the opportunity and see where it goes because many times a failed opportunity ultimately leads to a great blessing.
I have written a lot of posts that pertain to leadership because it weaves through everything. Whether you lead a company, a division, team, 1 person, or just yourself, your growth as a leader will directly impact your success and the success of your organization.
While I have shared my 4 Pillar of Leadership before, I want to go more in depth on one of them in this post, because it is one of the most important and hardest to get right for leaders.
The pillar I am talking about is that "People live up to the expectations that are set for them." It's easy to set expectations. It's very hard as a leader to help them live up to them.
It's very important to have expectations for what you want people you lead to do and accomplish and it's very important to help them understand their unique genius and true capability. The latter is an expectation as well...an expectation for the potential of an individual.
And that is the hardest thing. How do you help someone understand their true potential, believe in, and then go about making it a reality?
The short answer? By caring about it as much as they do and getting in the trenches with them to help them reach it. To go through the ups and downs and bleed with them is the only and best way. Now, this doesn't mean that you do things for them or don't leave them on their own to find themselves. It does mean that you are there at the right times to pick them up and help them persist through and continue on the path to live up to their truth self and expectations.
Ask yourself, "If I set expectation and share the possibilities of who someone can become, do I really believe it? If so, I am willing to go the distance with them to make it reality? Am I prepared to put in the effort needed and be there when they need me?" Many "managers" set hollow expectations. They tell people what they expect and then leave them on an island. That's not leadership. Leadership is putting those you lead ahead of you and being as invested in their success and potential as you want them to be, and showing it in your actions.
Make sure you are setting expectations as a leader and not a manager and you'll be amazed at what can be accomplished.
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