Want to Be a Braver Leader? 3 Things to Stop Doing First

Want to Be a Braver Leader? 3 Things to Stop Doing First

Hello there, my friends. I hope you are taking some deep, deep breaths in this very moment and I want to say thank you for being here.

This podcast episode is sponsored by The Brave Yes Deep Dive Discovery Program — a delightful self-discovery program to help you find your next Brave Yes Leap. This program is different in that it’s a DIY audio and workbook structure that also includes a coaching session with me, Shawn Fink, the Brave Yes Show Founder. If you’ve been feeling bored with your life, not sure of how to jazz up your creativity this year or feeling a shift or a change rising up in your life, business or career — this program is for you. A link for learning more can be found in the show notes.

This past week, I published a long-form blog post called Want to Be Braver? 10 Ways to Live More Courageously in Your Life. I am happy to report that I have experienced all 10 types of courage laid out in that post.

And I am working on deepening my own work in each of them still.

“Being brave, doing big things, taking risks — in personal and professional lives — is a beautiful, fun life experiment. My people like variety and change. We need inspiration and motivation from many sources. Doing the same thing day after day isn’t on our list of happy things.”


I’m guessing you have big dreams and big and small goals — things that you know you should be working toward or want to be working toward but you’re not seeing the kind of progress you want to make.

  • You want to BECOME your highest self.
  • You want to grow your own authority in your work.
  • You want to make and create beautiful things!

Well, getting there takes work.


Maybe you want to be a prolific writer, an author, a thought leader, a highly sought after coach … you want the million-dollar biz, the fancy house, the Tesla (OK, this is my dream not yours.)

Well, to do big things requires hard work. I work with a lot of creators and big thinkers — whose ideas need to be more visible in this world but they aren’t getting the kind of traction they want. We need to change this.

No matter what your dream, passion or idea is — it deserves to be realized.

You deserve to be someone who is fully self-expressed in this world, who gets to show up and be you and do the kind of work you dream of doing. If you have created anything or dreamed big for any thing you are passionate about — I absolutely want to help you see it through.

Even if it takes years. Or decades. Or hours.

The problem with dreams and goals — and the way we are influenced today — is that we think it should just all show up.

My daughter thinks that a fancy new phone and a new Macbook Pro is going to catapult her to YouTube fame. I’ve had clients who want to see their business grow but they don’t want to do what it takes to make a business grow — but only in ways they’ve read about like 4-hour work days and 3-day weeks.

Building anything — a business, a coaching practice, a book, a program, a side hustle. — takes time. I spent countless hours building my first business Abundant Mama. I continue to try and create things that aren’t business or life as usual. We have enough of that. But that means I have to put the time in.

And it also means I have to stop other things.

So, if you want to do deep service in this world — to yourself and others — by creating, making and offering beautiful things — you need to stop doing a few things.

  • People Pleasing.
  • Letting Your To-Do List Win.
  • Getting too sucked into the chaos and drama of life — yours or others.

I dive into all three of these more deeply on the podcast episode.

The truth of the matter is that until we master ourselves and stop doing these three things we will struggle with being braver and doing braver leadership work.

Being bolder and braver is a big part of my coaching programs — because the world needs your leadership more than ever.

Want to be Braver? Here’s 10 Ways to Live a More Courageous Life

Want to be Braver? Here’s 10 Ways to Live a More Courageous Life

I don’t know a single woman who doesn’t want to be braver — at least in some form or another.

I have worked so hard to push myself to be a brave person — to live more courageously.

It’s not always easy work for some of us.

When I was a child, my best friend and I would run around my grandparent’s huge 50 acres of forest, or her family’s rural farm pretending we were supergirls with special superpowers that protected us from everything.

  • We were fearless. 
  • We climbed rock walls and trees.
  • We lept from rock to rock in the creek.
  • We ran through fields imagining we were chasing villains and saving the world. 

Oh, if only all that was possible as adults.

Our superpowers must have worked wonders because we always managed to rise up from the pitfalls of our adventures such as the ravenous teeth of dogs chasing us through the woods or even my great fall squarely into a manure pit, losing a shoe in the process.

We were fearless and confident and anything was possible. 

Now as adults, we face with a whole new world and a lot of broken systems, new ways of doing business and a tsunami of ideas coming at us — and so much possibility!

Why You Need to Cultivate Courage as a Creator, Changemaker and Leader

I have been writing and creating online for 15 years.

And I remember the first webinar I did — and how terrified I was to go before hundreds of people on camera.

Now, that is easy for me.

If you want to play bigger, create more boldly and feel more confident by taking up space in the boardroom or a zoom room, you are likely wondering how you can be more brave.

One of my favorite personal development and coaching tools is focusing each morning on my own Brave Yes Power Tools. These are the tools I have selected that will help me be more me, be more confident and be more brave.

Because I’m not that fearless little girl anymore. I have to work for my courage. It’s a journey. A practice. A set of tools to use every single day because life has a way of taking over as we grow up and as we gain more and more responsibilities. Even when we know better, even when we know something needs to change, we become afraid to take risks.

We need courage now more than ever.

We need ALL kinds of courage because the world is burning in many ways — physically and metaphorically.

Change is needed — and at every level.

As a changemaker in my community and a Brave Yes Coach, I help women get unstuck and make a change. It is my passion to help you unearth your confidence, your personal power and your self-expressed self.

I call this unearthing your superpowers. (Are you surprised? No. I bet you are not.)

Your superpowers are not just your strengths. They are your stories. Your lived experiences. Your beliefs. Your desires.


I believe so strongly in helping quiet creators, coaches and changemakers finally know your self-worth, take up more space in your work and lead more bravely so you are the light. you need to be in this world. And to do that you must know your superpowers.

  • Your untapped brilliance is your biggest asset.
  • Your self-worth should be your biggest investment.
  • Your thought leadership, ideas and offerings deserve to be seen, heard and valued.
  • Your stories and lived experiences are your leverage.

This is why I love my Brave Yes Coaching methodology — a method that infuses personal narratives, Unshakeable Resilience and Well-Being, Mindfulness and Courage Coaching with soulful, gentle accountability, strategy and support.

I call this your Brave Yes Life.

There are Many Reasons Why We Want to be Braver

Brave isn’t always big.

Sometimes — and often — brave is quiet and hidden from the world around you that only you see it and know it’s unfolding.

The Brave Yes work my clients are focused on isn’t jet-setting and taking physical risk — though one of my more quiet clients did just brag about breaking a board in her karate class! Many of my clients are approaching midlife, raising families and don’t have the time or energy for big, physical risk-taking.

But rather they are focused on daily, everyday bravery — that’s what this world needs and that’s what I am here to help bring to light for my clients.

  • They want to make an impact.
  • They want to be taken seriously.
  • They want to be influential in their work and industry.
  • They want to serve deeply with heart and soul. 

Inside my Brave Yes Coaching Program, I work with you on operationalizing The Brave Yes Power Tools — a set of powerful tools, practices and exercises to boost resilience, courage and well-being. These are the tools we need to be more courageous, to be women of influence, to be authentic, brave creators and changemakers are necessary.

It’s very possible that you don’t know what your Brave Yes needs to be.

It’s possible that right now you only know right now that you want to take up more space and stretch yourself into “making good trouble,” as John Lewis wisely encouraged.


From my research and coaching work into the unshakeable resilience model that is the foundational work we must do in order to have the capacity to do BRAVE things and to live the Brave Yes Life, I have identified (at least) 10 types of courage you can apply in your life. 

Here’s 10 Ways to Live a More Courageous Life


Want to be Braver? Here's 10 Ways to Live a More Courageous Life

Spiritual Courage is actually one of my favorite areas to focus on in coaching as I have been inspiring women to leave their spiritual comfort zones for many years. Plus, as a longtime creative and creator — it takes a lot of trust to put your work out into the world, especially brave, authentic work that showcases your own ideas.

Spiritual courage is needed most when you need to take a Brave Yes Leap in your life — a new habit, a new attitude or perhaps a long overdue change that is scary yet exciting and liberating. You need spiritual courage when trust is needed as much as — or more than — taking action. Examples of this could include leaving an abusive or oppressive job, relationship or even a church. But it can also be a powerful practice as well if you simply want to expand your own spiritual beliefs or practice.

This kind of courage is also needed when you are ready to try something brave and out of your comfort zone — you know what you need to do but you are afraid nonetheless. Spiritual courage is also needed as you learn to trust yourself more or listen more to your own needs and intuition after years of not putting yourself first.


Want to be Braver? Here's 10 Ways to Live a More Courageous Life

Creative courage is a powerful yet fun focus area of courage — and one that I use often as an online creator, coach and writer. Creative courage is so needed in this world in order to stand out and make a splash in the busyness of the information highway.

We need leaders, artists, makers,, changemakers and creators to feel free to play and experiment with your full range of creativity and possibility. You need creative courage to write or even to dream of writing a book or becoming an author. You need creative courage to become a better painter, a prolific potter or a puppeteer (I actually have had a client whose husband did just this).

It takes creative courage to come out and practice your passion and to own it — such as one of my clients who is a clown but hadn’t done clowning since becoming a mother.

Creative Courage is all about taking risks in your creativity expression and working on how you become more fully self-expressed as your true self. This is exactly how we learn to take up more space.


Want to be Braver? Here's 10 Ways to Live a More Courageous Life

Physical courage isn’t just about running a marathon or signing up for Ironman — though it can be, for sure. It can also be about finally knowing that you need to make that long overdue dentist or mammogram appointment.

Physical courage is needed when you need to re-learn how to love yourself, take up space with your body and even give up on diet culture and learn how to love and listen to your body.

Physical courage is also needed when you are ready to leave your comfort zone and start to try new things — such as the time I finally swam in the sea for only the second time in my life. It might be ziplining or jumping out of an airplane but it also might be using your body to create a human wall during a protest.


Emotional courage is used when you are afraid to show your emotions, afraid to reveal your emotions or afraid to talk about your emotions — or other people’s. This is all about how you allow yourself to be in emotional discomfort as well as practice leaning toward positive emotions.

I’ve been working with women for years on what I call the messy middle — the very uncomfortable space between places or the the midst of change that hasn’t fully happened yet — and this is a place of emotional upheaval, which makes it the perfect time to practice emotional courage.

Emotional courage is about embracing and honoring all of our huge spectrum of feelings that course through us in a single day or week or month. Learning to embrace our sensitive nature is courageous.

This kind of courage can also be about learning to love yourself, finally believing in yourself and your self-worth or accepting all of yourself.


Social courage is what we practice when we stop caring so much about what others think of us and we start showing up fully as ourselves and taking up space in the world around us.

Social courage is about being authentically you in every way and not being afraid to stand out, stick out or look different from others.

It can also be about taking risks to make friendships — or to end toxic friendships.

I love working with my clients on social courage as it’s all apart of our journey toward taking up more space in this world — because this is about walking into a room and feeling like you belong no matter what.

And, just as important, is practicing social courage when you want to network, connect and uplevel in your career. Reaching. outto build new relationships can feel very risky — and yet it’s essential to moving up in your career.


Moral courage is about speaking up and leading your life based on your beliefs and values. It is beautiful to see people practicing moral courage more and more these days.

Of course, this is also what has divided people so it’s one that is super tricky and generally a challenge for humanity. And so moral courage can also be about listening, compassion and being kind in difficult circumstances.

When we are led by moral courage, we stand up and speak up for those who do not have a voice, we use our power to effect change and we do what we think is best based on our values and beliefs.

Sharing publicly that I support Black Lives Matter and other human rights causes is one way that I practice moral courage. I also have begun to plant trees as a 1:1 initiative for every client I work with.

Moral courage is an essential ingredient to use in the Brave Yes Life since it is values-led living and leadership.


Intellectual courage is hard to quantify but it can be as simple as learning more about an issue or cause that you are interested in. It can also be more complex like trying to understand a concept that is hard for you.

I work with my clients on deepening their intellectual courage all the time.

You need intellectual courage when you feel like you are not being stretched enough to use your mind, your brain or your ideas. You may feel bored by your job or your business. You may be bored in life, in general.

Intellectual courage is often more needed than we think and is such an easy one to work in to your everyday life. But choosing where to dedicate your learning energy is important. You want to focus on something that is going to truly capture your attention.


Financial courage is having the audacity to face your money story and your money struggles.

This type of courage is needed when you have been afraid to open your bank account and deal with the situation perhaps because of lack of enough money to do all the things you want in your life.

Financial courage is needed most when you need to have a better understanding of your financial situation and have possibly had your head in the sand over where your money is going.

You need financial courage when you are ready to uplevel in your life or lifestyle and take control over your money and your future.


This kind of courage is about being willing to change a part of your identity — or a long held belief about yourself — that is no longer serving you.

If you have a sense that you are being held back by childhood conditioning or a relationship, you may be feeling a need for an identity change. You may need identity courage if you feel like you are ready to transition to a new gender or even to release all binary definitions of yourself. This may also be needed if you are uncovering a new understanding of your sexuality.

Identity Courage is often a huge Brave Yes as it relates to leaving a bad marriage or a bad job. It may mean changing who you hang out with or the kind of work you do or the business you’ve been running. It may also be all about upleveling and rising into someone of influence rather than hiding and staying quiet.

You need identity courage when you want to be braver as you head through a life change that means letting go of some — or all — of who you used to be.


Self-awareness courage is about making the time and space to finally start knowing yourself and taking care of yourself.

This is often needed most when you are trying to make space for yourself, your needs, your joy and your pleasure after years of denial and hiding yourself.

Self-awareness courage is needed when you need to figure out who you are and what you are about and what brings you pleasure. Sometimes this kind of courage is about breaking bad habits, starting new rituals and routines or knowing finally what you really want for yourself.

This kind of courage is important because the fear of never knowing who you are and what brings you pleasure and joy is real. And, self-awareness work takes courage because it often brings up tender, difficult feelings. But it always leads you to a greater understanding of yourself so that you can be more brave and take up more space.

Perhaps you will resonate with one or a few of these areas of courage you want to focus on this year. And, if you are interested in learning more about how you can apply all of these areas of courage, sign up now for my PRIVATE BRAVE YES PODCAST. Each week, you will receive access to a 20-minute podcast episode that explores one of the 10 types of courage more deeply with stories, inspiration and reflection questions. Sign up below!