“Do not let yourself be a slave to chance, but let your dauntless mind shape the triumphant future you choose.”
~ Chandell Labbozzetta (paraphrase of William Shakespeare)
You: A Walled Fortress
In one of her essays, Simone Weil, Jewish-French philosopher and holocaust survivor reflects on the role of walls in our lives. When I read her thought-provoking reflection, I was reminded of many clients I’ve worked with over the years. Some used walls as an excuse to hide, others used them to communicate, still others smashed the walls wide open.
This is a paraphrase of Weil’s thoughts applied to people I know and clients I’ve worked with – including the ones who choose NOT to CHANGE.
When you are shut up in a row of cells, there is a wall that separates you from the prisoner in the next cell. Sometimes prisoners develop codes for communicating with other prisoners, creating a sense of community in their suffering, Sometimes ,prisoners are able to tunnel under the walls and communicate secretly, but more extensively. Sometimes, a miracle happens, the walls disintegrate, sunlight enters, and the prisoner is freed.
When that happens, the question is: how will the prisoner respond to freedom?
My goal (and the purpose for which I built LifePuzzle) isn’t to ‘influence’ people.
It’s to create change!
I’ve seen too many people who had all the resources, gifts, talents, and time they needed, choose to stay inside the walls of their self-confessed prison to think that ‘influence’ will be enough.
The Cost of Security and Self-Protection
For a prisoner, a wall can be frustrating as it stops them from building relationships and achieving their dreams.
So… Maybe you have built walls around you like a fortress, for protection from your fears. Unfortunately, the walls that shut others out, also shut you inside and stop you from achieving your dreams – or even setting your feet on the path toward them.
I’m not suggesting that you ignore precautions and recklessly go out in search of danger. Fear is an appropriate response to danger. The challenge lies in learning to trust yourself enough to distinguish between the fear that tells you to run from danger, and that which you need to over face and conquer.
The Call of Freedom
The history-makers of this world – those dauntless men and women who refused to be tamed by fear, bullied into silence or suppression of their gifts are the ones who are free. Free to serve others, free to share with others, and free to change and grow.
There is a price to be paid for that tantalising prospect of freedom. That price is CHANGE.
Do YOU want to be free?
Like anything else that is worthwhile, the price is high.
I train people to speak in public as well as providing sales training. In the context of developing both of those skills, I frequently share the statistic that over 70% of the population fear public speaking more than they fear death.
It’s an interesting contrast… because both of those dreaded outcomes involved a willingness to change, to grow, and to face the unknown. Neither of them ignore the reality of fear, but they both involve applying dauntless courage to that fear and moving forward in the face of it.
That is the cost of freedom.
Dauntless: Overcoming Fear
What is stopping you, from being, doing, and having everything you want?
It’s usually fear. That might be fear of:
- others’ mockery or criticism,
- hunger, misery, poverty…
BUT… Imagine what YOU could accomplish if you were dauntless – experiencing fear, but not letting it tame you.
- What goals would you set?
- What risks would you take?
- What tasks would you accomplish?
- What would change?
What is stopping you from being that person and doing those things?
All it takes is a willingness to step out and be yourself with dauntless determination.