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Courage and how to express yourself more!

coaching courage weekly video Jul 10, 2016



Hey, everyone. This is Shawn Buttner, Certified High Performance Coach, and today's video is going to continue talking about courage. And the theme for this month is, in a world of uncertainty, we need to step up and provide strength of character to help make the world better, right? Now I'm Shawn Buttner, Certified High Performance Coach, I help people become more awesomer so that they can live lives with more joy, growth, and happiness, and impact, and right now I just wanted to draw some things that are bugging me, right?

Have you ever felt a little overwhelmed with all the negativity in the news and the world abroad? You feel like you're just trying to make it through the day without trying to make any waves, or trying to feel like you're unable to say the things that you need to say to the people you need to say them to, such as your spouse, co-worker, boss? 

Do you ever just wonder how you can feel certain about the world again when everything seems like it's going mad?

 Me too, and in light of a lot of different events that have happened here in the US, I'm struggling to cope with the state of the world right now.

We have all this political uncertainty in the US with implications for the world, we're gearing up for an election, we have two candidates that are very polarizing, and a country that's really divided that one half tends the demonize the other half, and how are we going to come together and reconcile that, when one group thinks that they're right, the other one thinks that they're wrong? So we're in a very tough spot there, very uncertain spot moving forward. 

We have economic uncertainty. Whether you're part of the working class, and have seen families struggle, and there's this huge income gap, that is valid, where there's a group of people that are able to generate a lot of wealth, and then everyone else is left hanging, especially here in the bay area where there's a lot of fights going on over housing. And I don't know how people who work minimum wage can afford to live out here, because it's crazy insane how out of control housing prices have gotten.

Not to mention, to feed into the political and economic uncertainty, we have this Brexit, so people that are in finance, and one of the key indicators of how well the economy is doing being the stock market, whether that's right or wrong - won't get into that right now - but with Brexit, our inter-connected economy around the world is kind of uncertain right now, and going through a bunch of fluctuations, so everything's shaky. 

We have security uncertainty. If you take a look at the number of terrorist attacks that have happened this year in particular, you take a look at police brutality that we've seen here in the US, it doesn't feel like we're secure anymore.

And that is pretty shaking to the core, when you don't feel certain about the government, you don't feel certain about your livelihood and being able to help your family survive, and you don't feel certain about being secure anywhere in the world from terrorism, or even with sometimes the people that should be protecting us, that represent a very small portion of people that don't follow the ideas of all the good people that we have within our police. So this is why we need to talk about courage today.

To handle this myself, it's kind of been really emotional. You want to speak out, you don't know how to speak out, because as soon as you say something, there's going to be a bunch of people that are going to throw terrible comments at you, so you just have to understand that that's probably going to happen. I'm sure I'll get some flack on this video for just mentioning that there are problems, and that's okay. Part of having a strong, sound, courageous character is to just say, 'Okay, that's going to happen' and let's just move forward.

In my Certified High Performance training, we have tools to help relate with people, and persuade people, and influence people, and I've looked at those to try to figure out where we all have commonality, and what we can all agree on, because if we start from there, we can actually find solutions instead of blaming, and name calling, and not actually putting in effort to try to fix what is going on. So I just want to be a responsible citizen, I want to help change the conversation, so I know a lot of my family and friends, and people that I don't know, keep quiet because they don't want, or don't feel like they can fully express themselves without getting their head cut off, so here's kind of how I think through this, and I encourage you to think through this too, and to actually say something.

It doesn't matter if it's right or wrong, just say something about everything that's going on. One, I think you'll find it freeing, and two, I'll talk about some points. If we can keep these points in mind, we can maybe change how negative everything is, and have it positive, and constructive, and we can all move forward, and try to come up with some solutions to what's going on. So here are kind of my thoughts on it, alright?

In the old world, 30/50 years ago - 20 years ago, hell - we used to value debate and connect on common ground, and now it seems like we take shortcuts based on political parties that really don't represent us, and because we play team politics, or we make things black and white, and either or, there's this demonization of other people that's really rampant, and we need to stop that, right? What do I mean by this? So the whole argument that if you're part of the 'Black Lives Matter', you can't be part of the 'Blue Lives Matter', and that's just complete nonsense. We all value the police because they protect us, because they do a really good job majority of the times, and it's probably really thankless, because when they're doing their job, and they're doing good in the world, people recognize it, but it doesn't get as much attention as when there's videos of people experiencing police brutality quite frankly, right?

And whether that is or not, the perception is there, and that's a huge problem. And we all want to feel safe in our communities, we all want to be able to feel like we can go forward and talk to the people that are supposed to be serving the community without getting beat up, or discriminated against, and that goes for whatever color your skin is. If you're an American, or you're just a human being, everyone wants that, so if you can start from that place, that everyone wants to be respected, everyone wants to feel safe, everyone doesn't want to be discriminated against, no matter what, I think that is one of the bridges we can do to start to overcome some of those.

We also used to live in a more certain world. Like I said before, with the economic, political, and security fears, ultimately what this comes down to is the core of courage, right? We can all buy into this fear, and the terrorists win when we do that, when we start fighting amongst ourselves, when we start broadly stroking a group of people who don't want to be in a war torn place, they want to be someplace that's secure, someplace where there's more certainty, someplace where they can provide for their families, and not worry about dying, and have the world turn on them, giving them no choice but to join the ranks of the terrorists.

So it's crazy that this whole - I know we act out of anger in a lot of ways, because it's easy to mark people that came from a certain place like Syria or the Middle East or whatever, but having been to Istanbul that recently had a tragedy, those people, everyone I met there was completely lovely, are completely caring and kind, and very open, and very surprisingly. I had no idea to expect when I went there, and I'm very thankful I went there. My heart goes out to everyone there, goes out to everyone in Paris, goes out to everyone in Dallas, goes out to everyone in Baton Rouge - all these different places where there's been terrible things that have happened.

We just need to not let the fear take hold of us, and think about, 'Okay, how can we make this better? How can we prevent this from happening, in a common sense way?' And I think, again, if we start from there, that the world would be better. So what we're going to do is, when you're thinking about putting together your message to go and talk to people with about some of these really serious issues, couple of pieces of advice, four in particular.


Four Things to Know when Expressing Yourself:

The first, know your values. What's really important to you, and what is worth saying something passionately about? 

For me, it's tolerance, it's understanding, it's empathy. The whole message that we're all in this together, whether you realize it or not, it's very true, especially like with the economic part. We have this huge income gap, and some people that are so well off that have profited from everything that our society is able to produce, common infrastructure, education, stability itself in the world and here, and when there's a whole swathe of people that can't scrape by to make ends meet, it's not that they're lazy, it's not that they don't want to try. Everyone wants to have food and shelter and all that. If those basic needs are not being met, then there's a problem there that we should try to figure out, right?

Now whether the current solutions out there are working, are the right ones or not, I don't know, but understanding that they're human beings and they're doing the best that they can with what they have, and trying to figure out a way to make that better for them, I think is a very noble, courageous cause myself, so those are my values. The second thing - what are your values? Figure out what's important to you. 

Second point, understand that we all have commonality. We all want food, we all want shelter, we all want to be loved, we all want to be respected, we all want to work hard, and I really believe, especially here in the US, everyone wants to work so hard, and contribute to their communities, and their families, and the nation.

And when you come from that perspective, it's a lot easier to have empathy for all the different people that we have here. So try to come from that perspective, and see how you might change if there's particular groups that you don't agree with, or don't understand who or how are those needs not being met, maybe, is a good thing to think about, and what can we do as a community to help them out.

The third thing is to speak out with respect. I'm just going to say this - I have no idea who you are mostly if you're watching this video, I'm very thankful that you've been following me and watching my videos. No matter what your opinion is, it's valued, it's correct, and I would say just remember that everyone that you're talking to believes that they're right, and that they have the right point of view, and we can disagree, we can have differences and it's totally awesome, and we can have dialogues about it, and we can not see eye to eye on the same things, but at the end of the day, you have your experience and I completely respect you for that, and for speaking up, and for doing what you do, so kudos to you. Keep it up.

We need more voices, especially in a democracy, but we need more voices speaking up for what's right, or what's just, what's good in the world, because that's how it works I think. We're all in it together. 

Fourth point, don't let people that are misinformed, or have ideas that are bad, go unchallenged. So you can do it with respect, you can do it with the understanding that we all want the same thing, you can do it understanding that maybe the person that we're talking to doesn't have the same values that we have, and it's totally cool, but we need to speak up and say something, right?

It's one of those things that it's very alarming to me how much face value people take the video news. So Fox, CNN, MSNBC - all those things all have a bias, all are sending a message, you can get hit over, and over, and over with it, and it's really easy to just accept it and then regurgitate it, and we don't need that. We need people that are really thinking about, 'Well, what else is going on? What else could we be focusing on that would be a lot more advantageous to everyone?' So calling certain groups based on power or their politics different names is not helpful. Figuring out what is the best way to prevent terrorists from getting guns, like that is something I think we all agree on, that that's bad.

So what's the most sane way to do that without violating our constitution? Stuff like that, we can totally do this, guys. Come on. So those are our four things. 

To summarize:

know what you value
understand that we all have commonality, and where that comes from, 
speak up with respect
Do not let ignorant words go unchallenged, or misinformed words.
Ignorance is probably not the best word, but to speak up and challenge people that might have bad ideas. 

So here's a couple of rules while you're going about that too, to keep in mind, to make sure that you're extra effective.

Don't make attacks personal, and try to praise people, and just connect with them. It's like, 'Hey, you're awesome. I don't agree with that.' That's cool. People will be a lot more receptive, and we can have a better dialogue if you acknowledge that people have good intent, want the same things out of life that we do, and connect on that, and then say, 'Okay, I don't think that this idea is awesome, and here's why. This is what I believe.' Totally cool. Again, I want to hammer this, understand, don't give in to fear or conflict, and what that means is, speaking up and upsetting people has kind of been viewed that it's not okay. 

I think, from what I've observed - and what do I mean by that? It's getting into a shouting match over Trump versus Hillary or whatever, and Hillary and Bernie, or Trump and Cruz, or whatever. Just by having a different idea, it's going to turn into this big, emotional conflict, and we need to kind of get over that. And I say we need to get over that, because we need to get to a more civil discourse versus the personal attacks, or the high emotion attached to ideas. When you're highly attached to something, it's going to be really hard to accept something that could be good, and could be good information, and could help shape a better outcome for everyone.

Understand that you might not change a mind immediately. With enough challenge and people, things will change. So what do I mean by that? It's making sure people understand their assumptions, making sure they understand why they feel the way they do, or why they think the way that they do, is the only way we're going to get people to have those changes in perspective and thought and feeling, that are going to benefit. And it's going to be compromise, and it's going to be, 'Well, I don't agree with everything that you say, but this one thing, okay, I can see this. Let's go and work on that.' 

And then of course smile, and try to make it as light and positive as possible, because as soon as you go into a negative space, you shut people down, and it just makes things worse, and more negativity comes out. It's not super positive. So hope you enjoyed the video, I hope you are feeling enabled to be more courageous in voicing and expressing yourself, and what you feel in the world, especially with all the things that are coming out.

I would love, love, love to hear you, or hear what you're thinking about any of this, so post your thoughts on how we can come together and lift people up. 

Imagine if you fully express yourself in your day to day job, and we're able to change a couple people's minds on some things that are really important to you, that really matter for our community and all that, how would that feel, and what would happen if we actually built this better world together? 

Alright, so hope you enjoyed the video. 

If you did, please do the social media things and share it. Post your thoughts and express yourself with anything. What are your values, what's important to you, how can we have a better world? 

I would love to hear all of that, so just post it below, and I will see you guys next week.



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