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Friday, December 2, 2022

Leading with Character: Have Faith

During the tough times we’re living through, we hear motivational slogans like “stronger together,” “moving forward together,” and “we’re all in this together.”

Last week I blogged about a topic I was inspired to address: being positive. I was pleasantly surprised by how that post boomeranged back to me with a barrage of positive comments! It confirmed my sense that people are thirsting for ways to feel good about themselves, their lives, our country, and the world. And, it validated my belief that positivity is contagious!

Even as I wrote that blog, I had nagging thoughts that being positive is easier said than done. Every generation has its challenges, but it seems we’re going through a particularly difficult decade. It’s hard to be positive when one is stressed and fearful.

Faith Can Banish Fear

This week, I’ll offer a tool that worked for me as I did my best to forge ahead during trying times in my life and career. That tool is faith. A great leader, the reverend Billy Graham, once said “Fear can banish faith, but faith can banish fear.” In today’s climate, many people are fearful, which can lead to negative thoughts and attitudes. Yet if we have faith, we can overcome the fears and anxiety that keep us from being positive.

During the tough times we’re living through, we hear motivational slogans like “stronger together,” “moving forward together,” and “we’re all in this together.” To achieve those aspirations, we humans must have faith: faith in God if we believe, faith in ourselves, and faith in each other. That continuum of faith leads to a sense of purpose and strength as in “I can do this,” and “We can get through this.”

A Shared Sense of Purpose

Drawing upon the individual strength that we derive from faith in God if we believe and faith in ourselves, we place our faith in others to do their part and we reach out to help each other be stronger. There’s power in a shared sense of purpose and faith that, together, we can see this through. Coming together in support of a shared purpose that everyone believes in creates a positive climate where people can envision a brighter future.

A Recipe for Positivity

Those who find themselves leading through challenges and crises can draw upon their faith to find the inspiration to be positive. Faith in God, faith in themselves, and faith in their people. A powerful recipe for positivity.

Look in the mirror. As a leader, are you helping your people find ways to banish fear and be positive, even during stressful times?

Please join me again next week for more on Leading with Character.

If you enjoyed this post, please visit my website where you can sign up for my mailing list to get my weekly blog and buy my book, Breaking Ice & Breaking Glass: Leading in Uncharted Waters: https://sandrastosz.com/book/breaking-ice-and-breaking-glass/

Sandra L. Stosz
Vice Admiral Stosz, a Homeland Security Today editorial board member, started out in the U.S. Coast Guard as an ensign serving on polar icebreakers, conducting national security missions from the Arctic to the Antarctic. Her 40-year career is filled with leadership lessons gleaned while breaking ice and breaking glass as the first woman to command an icebreaker on the Great Lakes and to lead a U.S. armed forces service academy. She finished her career as the first woman assigned as Deputy Commandant for Mission Support, directing one of the Coast Guard’s largest enterprises. She has lectured widely on leadership, and has been featured on CSPAN and other media outlets. In 2012, Newsweek’s “The Daily Beast” named Vice Admiral Stosz to their list of 150 Women who Shake the World. Proceeds from “Breaking Ice and Breaking Glass: Leading in Uncharted Waters” will be donated to the US Coast Guard Academy James M. Loy Institute for Leadership.

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