The Exhilarating Power Of Standing Up & Being Counted

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Courage-and-ConvictionPost written by Peter G. James Sinclair.

“If you stand up and be counted, from time to time you may get yourself knocked down. But remember this: A man flattened by an opponent can get up again. A man flattened by conformity stays down for good.”―  Thomas J. Watson Jr.

Some time ago I received an email that finished with ‘your courage of conviction stands alone as a refined strength!’ To receive such a comment from someone who had a profound impact on my life as a young man was both humbling and an honor.

We live in such a wishy-washy world at times where peer pressure pervades its way into the lives of not only the young but on to even those who are old. Rare is it to see someone rise head and shoulders above the crowd to state their convictions and their beliefs unashamedly in a forthright manner.

It takes courage. It takes an understanding that to be true to oneself is much more important than to be swayed by the ocean of mass or media opinion.

And yet when one rises, those on the sidelines often applaud, and deep down I believe there are many less courageous ones who secretly, in their hearts, wish that they too had stood up for what they truly and deeply believe.

My Personal Story Of Courage Of Conviction

In my mid-twenties my life’s direction took a major shift when my brand new wife and I opened our home to receive a family of five, which included three young children. To say that our life was turned upside down, or right side up as it were at the time, is an understatement.

To the horror of my close family we had done something totally unconventional and unthinkable. But at that time, my wife and I knew that it was the right thing to do.

It was during this period of my life that the ‘courage of conviction’ was firmly entrenched in my being.

Before taking this family under our roof I had been invited to take up a contract for a national post with an organization that included a salary package that provided free housing, a company vehicle, and an attractive income for three years. But within six months I soon recognized that the values that I held dear were not necessarily those shared by the organization, and it started to become very evident to me that a collision was eventually going to occur between myself and those who were in leadership.

So before even six months passed the leadership ordered me that I needed to ‘tow the line’ and go against my convictions. I refused and resigned, leaving behind two and a half years of security.

Do I regret that decision? Not one bit. Being true to my foundational beliefs and heartfelt convictions is much more precious to me than any monetary gain.

And that is the way I have continued to live my life. As a direct result of this I can sleep at night because of the courage of my convictions – and I must admit that it warms my heart when another person tells me that my ‘courage of conviction stands alone as a refined strength.’

May you be encouraged to have the same courage to be true to yourself, to your deepest feelings, beliefs and convictions. For therein lies the spirit of peace, true success and happiness.

Stand up and be counted amongst the courageous and the great.

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