Now Is the Time for 'Brave Leadership'. Are You Ready?Tweet
Did you listen to today's news?
A crisis. A breakthrough. Severe weather. Unexpected warmth. Random acts of violence. Random acts of kindness. Economic debacles. New technologies. Obsolescence and decay. Hope. Fear. Love. War. Peace. Turmoil.
It's a steady diet of uncertainty. It calls for us to step up. Now is the time for 'brave leadership'. Are you ready?
You could hear a pin drop.
My nephew struggled to hold back his tears. We let our own flow... The task was big. He drew in a long, slow breath. In a quiet, almost whispering, yet eerily steady voice, Vincent began the eulogy for his Grandpa; my Dad.
"When I think of words to describe my Grandpa, the word BRAVE is one of the first to come to mind," he began.
My Dad was such a quiet and mild-mannered man. Soft spoken. Big hearted. Kind. Generous. In his second career, his co-workers lovingly called him "Earl the Pearl."
Indeed he was... a pearl.
You see, my Dad was a quintessential introvert. So much so, that in his later years, he became somewhat of a hermit, even. Not exactly the imagery of one who is BRAVE.
BRAVE, instead, is more often equated with boldness. Bravado. Someone larger than life. Not the quiet strength my Dad always showed.
Vincent went on to explain.
And as I listened to him so lovingly and eloquently describe his Grandpa, I thought... "Wow! The term BRAVE could not be more perfect."
He spoke, with reverence and respect, of the courage his Grandpa had always shown in the face of life's trials. He'd had more than a few!
He related his admiration for his Grandpa's pioneering spirit in his first career. The character and commitment his work had demanded of him. His steadfastness during long stretches of isolation. His deep connection, in spite of time away from family. How effortless Grandpa had always made it seem. How willing he was in the face of frequent, deep change. How humble in his accomplishments.
But most of all, Vincent reminded us of his Grandpa's authentic nature. No need to prove himself. No need to be in the limelight. His quiet presence spoke volumes. His silence carried deep impact. And, his influence was both magnetic and magnanimous.
As I listened, I was reminded of Kimberly Davis' beautiful book: BRAVE LEADERSHIP. It had been my companion as I kept vigil at my Dad's side. I found its message oddly comforting as I thumbed just a few pages at a time. Not wanting to read, yet vulnerably receptive to the book's message. Sitting there, helpless, knowing my Dad's life was slipping away. Wanting so much for him to hang on and yet seeking the strength to love him enough to let him go. Wanting to be brave when every ounce of me was filled with dread. And knowing I was ready; though never ready at all.
Ahhh. BRAVE. It was one of the last things I said to my Dad in those final hours. "You've been so brave," I'd whispered.
It didn't mean having no fear. It meant facing all fear. With gratitude. Humility. Grace. And, positive expectation. Yes, even when facing the pervasive certainty of death, having positive expectation. That death could be a final chapter of hope and inspiration for life to continue in a spirit of service, joy, and contribution.
And so, my Dad died as he lived. Well loved. Quietly. With grace, dignity and kindness. Unceremoniously. BRAVEly.
My Dad's legacy? His life's 'message'? Vincent's heartfelt and courageous tribute? Just that. Be BRAVE. Be you. Lead by example. Earn your way. Help others. Contribute in ways that outlive your own life.
I felt so comforted. And proud, too. Of my nephew and all his accomplishments, and of my Dad and his life. Of the beautiful tribute that Vincent had spontaneously delivered. Of his own commitment to being BRAVE. Of my sister, Dad's steadfast, brave caregiver and champion, whose tireless giving made his senior years truly golden.
Of how my Dad now lives on, in our hearts, and through our own actions.
'BRAVE Leadership'. That's what Kimberly's book encourages in each of us. It holds the promise of potential. YOURS. It's full of guideposts to remind us of what BRAVE leadership takes -- especially when it's so much easier to cower. To shy away from what's ahead. Or, attempt to loudly bluster through it.
Instead, her examples, tools and messages help us muster courage. Face what you need to. Do what you can. Bring your best forward. Make a difference.
Why? Because whatever you may be facing -- whether easy or daunting -- now is the time for 'BRAVE LEADERSHIP'. Are you ready?
Read it. Savour it. Act on it.
About the Book's Author:
You will be, when you read this book and take action on the principles and tools it offers. Get inspired as expert on authentic leadership, Kimberly Davis, shares her empowering message. A message of personal and leadership courage, influence, responsibility, and impact.
Meet Kimberly: http://www.braveleadershipbook.com/
Kimberly's TEDx Talk: https://onstageleadership.com/blog/project/speak/
From me to you:
I have no financial interest in promoting Kimberly's work. My motto remains, "Your Meaningful Vision, Fulfilled." That means I delight in helping people achieve their aspirations and vision for success. It's about energizing people, possibilities and performance.
If introducing you to Kimberly's book does that for you -- and for her -- then, mission accomplished! We need more BRAVE Leadership. I hope you will feel inspired to bring forward your best YOU, even more, as a result of our connection.
Now Is the Time for 'Brave Leadership'. Are You Ready?
Enjoy this 2nd post I wrote on Kimberly's book: Everyday BRAVE. It includes a handy summary of core thoughts.