10 February 2010

Fearful, Forceful or Fierceful: Which Is Your Approach To Life and Why Does It Matter?

Admittedly, fierceful isn't a word, but for the integrity of the headline, it stays. Word or no word, it doesn't change the message of this exploration.

Definition of Fearful: Feeling fear, dread, apprehension, anxiety or concern
Definition of Forceful: Acting or driven with force
Definition of Fierce(ful): Extremely intense or ardent

If you're fearful, there is something--usually something BIG--underlying that feeling. Maybe it's conscious, maybe it's subconscious, but either way your actions are steeped in this overpowering and often paralyzing feeling, often to the point that you are incapable of making wise choices. Fear only begets more fear. It festers. It grows. And feeding the monster of fear with your words, thoughts and actions only makes you feel worse. If you're a worrier, you know exactly what it's like. Day in, day out, it is your constant companion and yet you may have an inkling that because of the grief it causes, it's no way to run your business or your life.

If you're forceful, you are constantly pushing people, events and circumstances, to respond to your sheer will that they comply with your vision. You cannot be bothered with how people perceive you or the impact on them of your words, thoughts and actions. After all, you have a vision and it is a driving force! You feel absolutely justified in your approach, regardless of external signs that something is amiss. Sometimes, you and your agenda are literally a force to be reckoned with, making even minor issues, very big ones. You are unapproachable. Life lacks anything resembling effortless flow. You are in charge and it's up to you to make everything work... at the greatest expense imaginable: your peace-of-mind and of those around you. You shoulder the weight of the world and the cracks in the fortress are beginning to split wide open. At it's core, force is fear. It's an attempt to control, driven by the need for safety or security, which never actually manifests peace or flow, but only creates more of the same: fear.

Let's move beyond the many limitations of fearful and forceful living to a whole-life approach based in healthy, powerful resolve: fierceful living.

Using the brief definition above of fierce, notice the word ardent. The definition of ardent includes words like intense feeling, passionate, fervent, intensely devoted, eager, zealous, burning, fiery and hot.

All these words or terms are powerful and positive. They motivate and inspire. They propel and energize. They excite and prompt. They contain the juice that positively moves us from where we are to where we'd rather be.

Neither fear nor force motivates, inspires, propels, energizes, excites or drives. Fear and force are old patterns based in pain. They are our deeply ingrained habits, developed long ago as coping mechanisms. And the truth is they no longer serve us.

So, it's time to let them go. It's the perfect time to step into our fierceness-of-being. It's time to release debilitating habits and create ourselves anew.

What is fierceful living?
  1. In its wisdom, it recognizes injustice in its many forms and stands up to say, "No more," regardless of the consequences.
  2. It is courage, to the core, no matter how things actually feel inside.
  3. It sets personal agendas aside and puts people first, always.
  4. It has an unshakable and undeniable clarity guiding its every strategic move.
  5. It assumes full responsibility for all outcomes.
  6. It continually creates room for more fullness, variety, color, grandness and opportunity.
  7. It stands for something, instead of nothing.

You cannot create from fear or force, for they do not contain the elements to deliver such an outcome. With either, you can only create more of the same.

Be fierce. Be bold. Be you. Now is the time.

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