Today I want to talk about something else. It also begins with a C, and it’s Courage-and in particular the courage it takes to create something. It’s about the role courage has played in my own life and the role it can play in yours. Courage is not just for people in the army. Courage is the most important ingredient you need in living a life that matters and making a contribution in this world. You may know the similar words-- risk, taking chances but I want to use the word courage because that’s the word that puts the responsibility where it belongs. Right on ME AND RIGHT ON you. When I think back on my 19 years at Keio, although I HAVE taught many courses, given many presentations and wrote many articles, it’s actually “courage” that has been the most important message that I have tried to get across to people. I have encouraged others to have the courage to dream, the courage to change, the courage to be who you are, the courage to follow your own path, the courage to communicate with others, the courage to take the next step.
ut more typically it looks like this. It’s up and down, but if you want to create something, you stay with it because it’s worth it. You work through the ups and downs. If you want to create something, you never give up. LIKE A DARUMA
“ why not?”
First, you have deal with your fear. You have to know what is holding you back. The biggest enemy of courage is fear-fear of failure, fear of success, fear of your parents, boss, fear of what other people think, fear of being called a gaijin. Recognize that you have the fear, put your fear aside and make peace with it. What’s the worst thing that can happen? Lose money? Be embarrassed? Your mother will be upset? Lose your car? In teaching at Keio, I have told my students to write down everything they are worried about and throw it away. You can’t give a talk, make a plan, have a dream when you are overcome by fear. Don’t get angry at your fear. Make peace with it. Don’t let it consume you-just keep it on the side and shake hands with it. The absence of fear gives you power beyond your imagination. I know about fear first hand. When I was younger, I will tell you honestly that was afraid to give a speech in class. I was petrified. I would be absent on days I was supposed to give a speech. Early in my career as a professor, I HAD A CHANCE TO WORK WITH PETER DRUCKER who wanted me to collaborate with him, but I skipped that chance because of fear. So, I know it, but I have learned to put my fear on the side. Sometimes this is what you have to do.
Courage also requires you to have passion, but it’s hard to have passion when you have so much fear. That’s why I talked about fear first. If you have the passion- afire inside you to do something, to make something happen, to do something that you absolutely have to do, then the courage will come Some people tell me that they don’t know what they want, they don’t feel any passion. But I dont believe them. I ask a lot of questions. What do you love? What do you hate? Where do you want to be? What kind of lifestyle do you want? Eventually their passion surfaces. In some cases, we are afraid to recognize the passion we have because we don’t think we can achieve it. Sometimes it’s buried and then our job is to dig it up.
We worked on projects. I talked less and the students took on more leadership. We talked about careers, about meaning in work, about life and about love. We created a community.
CAUTION OR COURAGE What would it take for you for you to move one or two steps up? It will take COUYRAGE [next slide] MEET HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE, ARE YO A DO IT OR A GONNA DO IT. Can you be someone who will make a difference.