Do you want to speak up and voice your opinion?
 
Then you need to be willing to have someone not agree with you.
 
Do you want to take the lead in that project?
 
Then you need to be willing to have someone criticize your approach.
 
Do you want to give your co-worker that much-needed feedback?
 
Then you need to be willing to get judged yourself.
 
Do you want to pitch your idea?
 
Then you need to be willing to have someone call that stupid and crazy.
 
Do you want to deliver top notch work?
 
Then you need to be willing to fail – a lot.
 
Because one can’t go without the other.
 
Take away your willingness to have someone disagree, and you’ll keep quiet in meetings.
 
Take away your willingness to be criticized, and you’ll hide and never show what a great leader you are.
 
Take away your willingness to be judged, and you’ll end up feeling frustrated and resentful with other people’s behavior.
 
Because you’ll say yes to way too many “maintenance” tasks that could be done by someone else and don’t require your strengths, expertise and vision.
 
Because you’ll play it safe inside your comfort zone, while you see others do exciting things you find yourself shying away from.
 
Take away your willingness to have someone call your idea stupid and crazy, and you’ll stick to the beaten path, never making the difference you can make – with your unique blend of talents, skills and style.
 
Take away your willingness to fail and you’ll work long hours to write the perfect email or that perfect presentation.
 
You’ll procrastinate, over-prepare, over-tweak, over-re-read and over-think.
 
So that in the end, you find yourself rushing all the time in an attempt to get it all done, delivering work you’re deep down never truly satisfied with – despite your best intentions. 
While others get invited to workshops, asked to lead projects, are listened to in meetings, …
 
NOT because they got more valuable things to say.
 
NOT because they are more capable.
 
But because they speak up and share their ideas.
 
Because they don’t get side-tracked by endless to-dos.
 
Because they do and fail and then do some more.
 
Because they don’t let their failures slow them down or think any less of themselves.
 
Because they are ok with others disagreeing or not liking their ideas.
 
Because they are not using others’ opinions as a judgement call of how capable they are.
 
Those are not innate talents.
 
Those are skills that can be learned.
 
Those are skills that you can learn.
 
So you are seen, valued and sought after too.
 
So you’ll have the impact you KNOW you can have.