Ever sat in a meeting thinking, "If only I had the guts?" Perhaps you found yourself playing it safe rather than speaking up, suggesting a change or taking a chance only to regret it later?
There is no doubt, that from time to time, most of us wish we were a little braver when it comes to saying and doing what we think really needs to be done in our work.
Be it a difficult conversation that needs to had, a negotiation on which we have to hold firm, or an opportunity that we believe needs to be seized, bravery is not the absence of fear but the ability to triumph over it.
"Often we think of bravery as acts of heroism on the battle field," explains courage coach and best-selling author Margie Warrell. "In reality every one of us is called on to be courageous in some aspect of our lives, every single day."
Bravery is an action that takes place despite the presence of fear, the perceived personal risk, and an uncertain outcome.
Fortunately bravery isn't just something we're born with -- or without. Researchers are finding that bravery is actually a skill that we can learn and just like going to the gym each day to make your muscles stronger, you can build your bravery by practicing it in your everyday life.
"The more often we act bravely, the braver we become," said Margie.
Here are five ways Margie recommends you can be a little braver at work:
- Re-think Risk - We're wired to overestimate the probability of things going wrong and to underestimate our own abilities and deny the cost of inaction. The result is that when we're not happy with something at work, we have a tendency to stick with things as they are rather than take a risk. The reality is though that there is a cost to inaction that we often overlook. So it pays to be aware of where your cognitive bias are coming into play and weigh up the risks of not doing something brave.
If you were to do one brave thing at work today where would you start?
For 47 other ways you can feel a little braver at work grab a copy of Margie's new book "Brave."
This article first appeared on Psychology Today.