Leadership

Being brutally honest

Being brutally honest by Tanja Bogataj

The focused topic and inspiration for today’s article is courage and how we perceive and use it in our day-to-day life. 

I’ve read an article about Gari Kasparov and his way of dealing with a failure and learning from it. He suggested that one needs to be brutally honest with the failure and look it in the eye, what I’ve done wrong, what I need to correct, what’s not working, and do the work. This is an excellent definition of courage and being courageous – being brutally honest with yourself and what is and not what we’d like to see. 

We probably share views on courage and being courageous in more obvious situations, like helping someone in danger, going for a leadership position, standing for something we strongly believe in, protecting our team when challenged from the outside, etc.

It might be a bit tricky to call what courage and being courageous are in a situation when for example:

  • we’re striving to keep the status quo because we don’t know how to move on and we don’t want to make it worse, 
  • we’re controlling the situation by acting in learned ways, assuming that’s the right way to do it, or
  • we keep participating in certain challenging situations trying to co-create the opportunity for a better solution, while not knowing the interest of the others included etc.

My try on it: 

  • It takes courage to stay and maintain the status quo, especially if it’s not your comfortable status quo, and the status quo seems to be the best option for all included. 
  • It takes courage to maintain the status quo when our intention is to first explore and find better solutions for how to move on for all included, and not force our way.
  • It takes courage to revise your learned ways of doing things and to try different and new ways to find better ways, to improve, or create a growing environment for your team. 
  • It takes courage to not fight only for what we believe is “right, appropriate and best”, but being and staying open to understanding other points of view, staying in mutual exchange and learning, with the intention to understand and find better ways for all included.

What’s your perspective and experience on it? 

Be inspired and keep inspiring. Find the courage to share your thoughts with others, and learn from and with others. 

From my experience, this is the fastest way of growing. It might not be easy and always fun to look at yourself in the mirror, however, it often turns out to be way less painful than if you refuse to see yourself and make the needed adjustments and improvements. 

It’s all about learning, practicing, and progressing, anyway.