By Carey Lohrenz
Leaders Push the Edge of the Envelope
Leaders push boundaries. They are always looking for a way to improve on the status quo, to see progress. But change is difficult for most people; we fear change. New rules, new business models, new teammates onboard…
More often than not, fear of change stops us from taking action and can severely limit what we can accomplish. And that fear quickly becomes paralyzing. For both leaders and team members, fear prevents us from taking advantage of valuable opportunities.
But change is inevitable. How we respond and react to that change is up to us. We can choose to embrace change and move forward, or we can cower from it. And stay stuck.
Fearless leadership and fearless leaders push limits. Fearless leadership is not the absence of fear; it is the courage to face the fear, acknowledge it, and move forward any way. Inaction breeds doubt and fear; action breeds confidence and courage.
Pushing the envelope
In fighter aviation, our job requires us to constantly max perform both our aircraft limitations and our own physiological and psychological limitations. This includes pushing through fear. And yet, we are full time risk managers. A recent study published in the Journal of Neuroscience, even suggests that fighter pilots brains are in fact different when it comes to decision making and risk management. It is not known whether the differences can be attributed to nature or nurture yet.
But one thing is for certain: if you don’t push the edge of the envelope, you will never know what you are capable of accomplishing. What will you do today to push the edge of the envelope? Do one thing today that makes you uncomfortable. Get out of your comfort zone!
Carey Lohrenz is the author of the Wall Street Journal Best Seller “Fearless Leadership: High-Performance Lessons from the Flight Deck.”, a motivational speaker and leadership expert.
Carey has flown missions worldwide as a combat-mission-ready United States Navy F-14 Tomcat pilot. Her extensive experience operating in one of the world’s most challenging environments, an aircraft carrier, and her unique position as one of the first female combat pilots make her the perfect opening or closing inspirational keynote speaker for your corporate meeting or conference.
Carey graduated from the University of Wisconsin where she was a varsity rower, also training at the Pre-Olympic level. After graduation, she attended the Navy’s Aviation Officer Candidate School before starting flight training and her naval career. She is the mother of four kids, and is currently working on her Master’s in Business Administration in Strategic Leadership.