Many women think that speaking or acting in courage demonstrates offensive behavior even if they are conveying the truth. I call this tendency the “too syndrome”—too assertive, too independent, too intense, too bold, too honest, too smart. Ironically, when men demonstrate the same kind of behavior, they identify with baseball’s Dizzy Dean: “It ain’t braggin’ if you can do it!” Far from implying arrogance, comments like Dizzy’s simply reflect the self-confidence that comes from understanding one’s abilities and potential. Failure to demonstrate our abilities at work allows a subtle form of ambiguity to take root, producing a false persona. Do you “step up to the plate,” or have you allowed ambiguity to undermine your abilities as well as your potential? Lost potential is forgotten courage and represents the slow erosion of the spirit. In reality, the action taken (or lack thereof) reveals your courage quotient.
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