Avoidance is Not a Skill

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Are you comfortable with confrontation? Have you ever thought that the ability and willingness to be confrontational can be a differentiator?

I think when Thoreau observed that, “Most men live lives of quiet desperation,” he was commenting on their inability to confront reality, situations and people when they would be served well.

And in our indoctrinated, secular humanistic culture, we are continually pushed towards a form of tolerance that causes individuals to lose conviction. When there’s the trade between truth and tolerance, our culture overvalues the latter.

Tolerance can confuse people and makes avoidance a default action. Instead of talking about something important or addressing issues before they snowball, we lack the guts to push into something when it is required.

I think you get much better results when you are clear, know what you want and bring up discussions at the right time. Playing in the shadows and avoiding hard things when they need to be dealt with or surfaced won’t get you very far.

At the end of the day, the truth will be validated by the results you see and get. If you see a pattern and abundance of positive results, then keep going. If you are not seeing results or find yourself frustrated, then if you want more, you have to change approaches.

I can’t read people’s minds, nor do I care to. I want to talk about issues at the forefront so we can solve problems in a timely and efficient way. That requires candor and confrontation. And I’m comfortable with those interactions. It’s a form of leadership.

The great thing is that if you find yourself avoiding issues, when they need to be dealt with or presented, you always have the opportunity to lead. No one is stopping you. It’s risk. But it’s also rewarding, and it’s how people enjoy more results in their lives.

Do you avoid confrontation? Why?

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