Saturday, October 21, 2006

Curious about Audacity: Are You Audacious? Try Adding Some Audacity to Your Life or Some Life to Your Audacity

Definition of Audacity: Daring spirit, resolution, or confidence; venturesomeness. Or: Reckless daring; presumptuous impudence; -- implying a contempt of law or moral restraints.”

May I suggest that you embrace audacity and start making it work for you.

I find it quite curious that along with the positive portion of the definition is added a rather negative connotation with the words “reckless, impudence and contempt.” Yes, I feel that it does take courage to live our lives with audacity, but it also adds excitement, adventure and success.

Even Benjamin Disraeli stated, “Success is the child of audacity.”

And Publilius Syrus (85 B.C. to 45 A.D.) wrote, “Audacity augments courage; hesitation, fear.”

I take part in many packed teleseminars and am amazed that when a leader or facilitator asks for feedback and/or questions that so few of the participants respond. As a presenter, I also find this to be true. I know it does depend upon how comfortable your listeners are with you and the subject, but it also is a sign that they lack the confidence or audacity to speak up.

Before I share some of the few quotations I found - yes, there were only a few compared with the huge number I have found for other themes - let me give you the definition for audacious:

Audacious: Daring; spirited; adventurous. Bold in wickedness; presumptuous; impudent; insolent.”

Again, the second part of the definition seems quite negative and it may be that this interpretation of the word is the reason so few add audacity to the way they act and think.

Here are some of the quotations. And, thankfully, they are all positive.
  • With audacity one can undertake anything, but not do everything.” - Napoleon Bonaparte
  • I was young and audacious. So I created a way to express my concerns outside of the establishment.” - Joey Skaggs
  • The first quality that is needed is audacity.” - Winston Churchill
  • Freedom is a crusade, to be carried on enthusiastically around the earth. These are Americans who have not lost the enthusiasm and audacity of the American Revolution.” - Sargent Shriver
  • Never forget that no military leader has ever become great without audacity.” - Karl Von Clausewitz

In addition, here are a few with a different twist:

  • If men knew all that women think, they would be twenty times more audacious.” - Alphonse Karr
  • I feel a kind of reverence for the first books of young authors. There is so much aspiration in them, so much audacious hope and trembling fear, so much of the heart's history, that all errors and shortcomings are for a while lost sight of in the amiable self assertion of youth.” - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
  • Every great advance in science has issued from a new audacity of imagination.” - John Dewey
  • Tact in audacity is knowing how far you can go without going too far.” - Jean Cocteau

Recently, I watched a video of James A. Ray giving a presentation, where his theme was, “It’s not what you do. It’s how you do it.” I am urging you to do what you do with audacity and you will be overwhelmed by the outcomes.

Here are some parting quotations to work on this coming week:

"Audacity, more audacity, always audacity." - Georges Jacques Danton (1759-1794)

The method of the enterprising is to plan with audacity and execute with vigor.” - Christian Nestell Bovee

Have an audacious week!