#1134 How to Act Boldly

Choose Courageous Roles

In our last couple of +1s, we’ve chatted about the science of courage.

Let’s continue that discussion with some more pro tips on how to Optimize our Courage Quotient.

In The Courage Quotient, Robert Biswas-Diener tells us: “If we choose courageous roles or think of ourselves as filling courageous roles, we are more likely to act boldly when the need arises.

Then he tells us: “A perfect example of this is the action taken by nine- year-old Lin Hao in Suchuan, China. On May 12, 2008, Sichuan was struck by a magnitude 8.0 earthquake that left buildings flattened and more than 69,000 people dead. Among the most tragic losses on that day were the countless children whose school buildings collapsed. Lin Hao was in such a school and was able to rescue two of his second-grade classmates from the rubble before saving himself. When asked about his courage, this young boy simply explained that he was the hall monitor and that it was ‘my job’ to save the other children. Lin Hao quickly became a symbol of virtue in China and led the opening procession of the 2008 Olympic Summer Games.

← How awesome is THAT kid?!


Today’s +1.

Want to exhibit more courage?

Give yourself the right job.

Create a courageous role for yourself. Then play it well.

As I typed that I thought of some exemplars who played their roles well. We have Viktor Frankl, a psychotherapist in a concentration camp. James Stockdale, the commanding officer in a prisoner of war camp. And Marcus Aurelius, a lover of wisdom and reluctant Emperor.

Then we have YOU.

What roles are you being asked to play?

Energy + Work + Love wise.

What IDENTITIES can you create that will help you play those roles with the most virtue?

Let’s be that best, most courageous version of ourselves.


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