12 Ways to End Fear and Inspire Boldness
You just walked out of your boss’s office and you feel small and anxious. You work for a small boss.
Small, fearful leaders make others feel small and afraid.
You’re smaller than the person you make feel small.
Successful leaders make people feel brave and powerful.
4 P’s that end fear and inspire boldness:
- Practical Principles. The principle of maximizing strengths more than fixing weaknesses inspires boldness, for example.
- Pivotal People. Courageous leaders inspire bravery; fearful inspire fear.
- Private Practices. It’s hard to be bold when you’re being someone you’re not. Engage in self-reflection.
- Panic Projects. Remember when your hair was on fire and no one was around to put it out? Boldness is the result of working through fear.
12 ways to be a “Pivotal Person” who inspires boldness:
- Encourage but don’t coddle. Hand-holders prolong helplessness. Confidence blossoms when you realize you can stand on your own.
- Extend help but remain hands off. Do stuff with others not for others. When your desire to be helpful exceeds their commitment to succeed frustration sets in.
- Rise above minutia. Shine a light on their big picture and repeated patterns. Those who are in the battle don’t see the battle.
- Stay open to who they are. Don’t mold mini-me’s.
- Be curious and hopeful about their path.
- Share your successes and failures. But, listen more than talk.
- Hold high standards. Expect excellence.
- Show kindness but be tough. Say, “You have more in you.”
- Confront uncomfortable realities. “You gave up too soon.”
- Focus on growing through not giving up. Ask, “What are you learning?
- Give generously but don’t create dependence. Be sure they have more skin in the game than you.
- Challenge self-importance and entitlement thinking. Humility is the heart of courage.
Bonus: Believe in them more than they believe in themselves.
How have others inspired your boldness?
Which of the 4 P’s has transformed your leadership most?
So many opportunities to apply these today….in my family, in my classroom, and my church. #2, 8, and 9 especially as I help others grow.
Thanks Pete. It’s great to be on the journey with you. Cheers
More managers need to read this – great article
Thanks Theresa. Best wishes
Kapow. Dan! If we read nothing else in your posts, your two thoughts in today’s post are masterful: 1) We’re smaller than the person(s) we endeavor to make feel small; and 2) Believe in staff members [after all, we hired them] more than they believe in themselves.
These truisms are not only investments in our staff, our organizations, and success, but in our
own personal and professional fulfillment…our completeness…our “feeling good” about who we
are and what we do.
Thanks Books. Your perception regarding the return we receive when we invest in others is powerful. Thanks for coming at this topic from a very motivational perspective.
Dan, thank you for your leadership wisdom and you willingness to share it with all of us! I use your information in my leadership coaching and, of course, always credit you as the source (and provide them the link to your blog).
Thanks Cheri. It’s a pleasure to serve. We’re all on a journey and we all stand on each other’s shoulders.
How about a fifth “P:” Perpetual Practice. It takes a lot of practice to become good and stay good at these behaviors.
“Practice, practice, practice.” from that old Paul Hornung beer commercial.
Practicing and doing until things become unconsciously competent and you can just do it and get it done. So many skills are simple repetitions of simple motions. I play pool and drill drill drill is not about oil, but about competence and skill.
Good one, Dan.
Thanks Dr. Scott. I love it when I don’t have to think about, I just do it. Practice Practice … 🙂
Agreed, Scott. I am a pianist and practice is everything. And then practice some more.
Hi Steven. Powerful.
The roads and paths to our leadership have started at some point in our careers. One of my earliest paths to leadership started over 25 years ago after experiencing humility and respect from a top leader. From that point on, I took the perspective that every person should be treated with respect and openness regardless of their position/fame/importance in society. Glorification of people can be awkward for the person of status and it can make the person “worshipping” that person less effective when dealing with matters that need to be solved. I’ve worked with government officials, famous broadcasters, CEO’s, CIO’s, … and so on. I always try to connect with them at a human level first. Find that thing in common that can connect us an normal human beings.
When I have a boss or client that belittles me due to EGO/self importance/arrogance/entitlement I instantly feel PITY for that person … because now I see you as less human (kinda ironic since this is exactly what they are doing to you). Is this arrogance to be wanted to treated as a normal human being? Communication is a two way street. Effective communication means you find a path of common interest/connection. One more thing, I lose all respect for that person who treats me like a sub-human. You’ve been pegged in my mind as a poor human being.
So I’ve been following item 12. “Challenge self-importance and entitlement thinking. Humility is the heart of courage.” for quite some time. The caveat is that this has made me the target on many occasions by those who are lazy and/or do not aspire to lead positively out of due to their own selfish agendas. I wish I could say leading positively is easy but it’s not.
Thanks Michael. If leading positively was easy organizations would be more positive. Keep pressing forward. 🙂 Cheers
I appreciate the concept- you are smaller than the person you make feel small. Fearful leaders make others small. They do so to so their importance. They also do not since they do not accept they are small. By making others small, they feel bigger and they feel safe. Bold leaders encourage others. They know that encouraging others can actually make them powerful. I believe that creating fear is the sign of one’s ignorance. People create fear to show their power and position. But the hidden intention is to keep others way. By keeping others away, they feel not being questioned. When others question them, they feel threatened. And that is why, they make others small by creating fear.
People who have seen adversities and overcame them, are real teachers for me. I get inspired by them, and I learn more from them.
All 4 ps are important but practical principles are more effective. I also teach my students about my practical principles. They appreciate and learn more than anything else.
Thanks Dr. Gupta. I really like: “By making others small, they feel bigger and they feel safe.” Very powerful and illuminating.
I’m glad you picked out the “P” you feel is most important. I’m leaning toward Pivotal People or Panic Projects. But, I keep thinking the other one is more important. One day, perhaps we’ll have a debate. Cheers
In my eyes, Inspiration comes from “others believing in others” as you do Dan!
Perfectly stated with pleasant results should one apply the principles/practices that are being referenced today. Outstanding as always Dan!
Thanks Tim. One of the things I like about you Tim is you are positive. Plus, it’s always great to receive an encouraging compliment! 🙂 Cheers
I plan to use all of these to build the confidence of one of my leaders – to help her believe in herself as much as I believe in her. Great article which came at the perfect time.
Thanks Jeanine. It’s a pleasure to be useful. Best wishes as you push forward. Cheers
The creative principle of life …
All people in our lives have to give us something.
Every encounter and every conversation has a message for us. Every picture, every word and every sound has a very special value. Sometimes there is a very clear advice, a statement or information that brings us to this point on. Sometimes it is a gesture, a look or a hug that can remind us.
Sometimes we experience drastic as something not true for us to get a security for what is right for us and what we want.
EVERYTHING that we encounter in life, wants to say something to us. From the meeting, words, energies and events we can distill valuable aspects. Can perceive prejudice free and draw from it is an everlasting life task. Be aware that the experiences that touch you most – whether gently or hard, pleasant or unpleasant, attractive or repulsive – the most valuable and conducive for us.
Sometimes it is so that the pain and the fear or (our) judgments are retriggered, so that we can look at them and let go.
To be open to a value-free opinion – is a challenge. To abstain or withdraw from adverse human reactions is not always easy.
A portion of it, we might also bear in us – subconsciously. I can always make a conscious decision whether I go in Ressonanz or if it has nothing to do with ourselves.
Some people act with fear and / or overcommitment and a loss of credibility. Nobody can say ‘yes’ to everything. Why We Should say yes to everything? Without getting in trouble …? Anxiety influenced the thinking and restricts further – a development.
Always we have to decide – how we will act and react. A review has a lot to do with our own view of things in this world. With a constructive and optimistic attitude – can I see more and detect because I have to overcome “no” resistance in me. It’s worth it. It has special – successful – a beatific effects (benefits).
If we give – we usually get back more. Giving is a gift, and if we can accept also – Both is the way of wealth – the creative principle of life.
Dan like Point 7. and 12. – they´re are wonderful.
Motivating and trust in Growth (amplifier faith) – resonance principle 🙂
Joy is. Beate
LIFE OF ABUNDANCE.
to all opportunities. 😉
I wish all leaders in small businesses, especially small Family Physician Practices, doctors and health care managers read this good article.
Great piece! I agree, I think in order for one to be a leader, one must be courageous and be a “pivotal person” who inspires boldness.
Also I think if you see yourself as a small and fearful individual, then others will feel the same about it (yeah, we’ve all heard that before). But how many of us truly believe that? Clearly not many. So if you view yourself as a strong and brave individual, people will also see that about you; then maybe they will start to get some inspiration from you, and feel the same about themselves.