In my conversations about what it takes to be a courageous leader, I’ve been exploring topics of fear vs. love, forgiveness, vulnerability, and peace. 

Most leadership conversations are about leaders being bold and taking a stand which unfortunately still often means the old paradigm of command and control leadership. 

Peace is an unusual topic to explore and reminds me of beauty pageants that are often accused of being scripted where contestants simply share their perfectly rehearsed answers like in the scene from Miss Congeniality starring Sandra Bullock where all contestants of the Miss USA pageant gave the cliched answer “world peace”. 

When you are faced with a situation that is challenging, emotions can run high – and it’s easy for your brain to be hijacked – literally. 

Physiologically chemicals are being dumped into your blood stream to have you on high alert to keep you out of danger. 

This safety mechanism has the ability to serve you well in a serious, life-threatening situation. 

Yet, in everyday encounters where there is simply the need for more understanding through curiosity, a situation can go from bad to worse in an instant. 

I’ve experienced this more times than I care to admit. 

I remember years ago being in the middle of a disagreement with a colleague in the Federal government and thinking “just apologize, it’s no big deal,” yet the part of the brain that was running the show was my amygdala — and there was no sign of life from my prefrontal cortex — so this felt like the biggest crisis of my life, and I dug my heels in deeper. 

Until I began choosing to pave the way to create new neuropathways, the response would always be my way or the highway or command and control leadership. 

World peace begins with you.  

You can contribute to world peace every day. 

You simply have to choose peace in every situation. 

This is far more than refraining from physical violence, anger, and dissension. 

  • Peace is choosing to see similarities vs. differences.
  • Peace is giving someone the benefit of the doubt.
  • Peace is thinking kinder thoughts.
  • Peace is doing random acts of kindness.
  • Peace is being loving to everyone you meet, even if in your eyes they don’t deserve it.

 You don’t have to be world famous to move the planet towards peace. You simply have to see each person as valuable and treat them as such. 

When you do this, you contribute to world peace – and that takes courageous leadership. 

ACTION: The Upside Challenge of the week is to see where you can apply peace to get a different result and build new neuropathways…and courageous leadership. The world needs you and your brilliance.

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