The Power Of Conviction
Last week we looked at the first of the superpowers of a True Believer – that being Belief. Refer to https://www.candicewalker.com/blog/blog-11
The second of the three superpowers of a True Believer is conviction. Conviction is what gives belief its stamina – like an unstoppable life force. It’s when our belief is so strong and we are fixed on our vision – even when there is no evidence that the vision will become a reality – that we are inspired to take action towards our desired destination. When I am down, all it takes is a listen to Alicia Keys (especially) “Superwoman” to feel the power of conviction.
Unlike the convincer, who looks for agreement by trying to prove, the True Believer is already convinced and the energy moves from convincing to conviction. When you have conviction you don't really mind what others think – you argue less and suffer less stress – you don't have to prove yourself. When we don't have conviction we lack energy and stamina and are less productive and fulfilled.The convincer spends time convincing self and othersThe True Believer has conviction, even when no one’s watching. There are three parts to conviction and we will look at them in turn:
Many start off each New Year with dreams of a better life, but finish with no real change in their satisfaction level. Goal setting is just not enough. This became particularly pertinent when I was diagnosed with a brain tumor. There was no point setting goals with a long-term horizon (watching fireworks with my grand kids) I had to seek experiences, which were aligned with my values.
Feeling a little disillusioned, I decided to write a list. This was not a list of goals but a list of what I valued – what I was passionate about. This list was different to any I had ever written before.
I created two lists:
This discovery became a tipping point in my life. Not only did I create a family set of values with my kids; I spent six months rewriting my success formula to find answers to why people struggle and what it takes to live with fulfillment. I found my passion for what matters. I realized that I was to dedicate my life to inspiring people with cancer and their associated loved ones. When you do find your passion, not only do you get things done, but you get things done that matter. Find your passion for what matters and you will ignite the superpower of conviction.
We want to enjoy our life journey – as it happens – before we arrive at our destination. Often we reach a destination, it can be an anti-climax because we didn't get the things done that really matter. By focusing each day and every day on what is important – what we are passionate about – we can reach the end of our lives and not be riddled with regrets.
Being part of a cancer support group the one unavoidable is losing loved ones to the insidious disease. Upon hearing the dreaded news I often ask myself a question about the deceased: “Has their life been a full and rich one with few regrets?” Funerals remind us that the clock is always ticking and every precious minute counts, As Thoreau says, “Most lead lives of quiet desperation and go to grave with the song still in them.”
Make it your mission to reject ‘settling’ and aim higher than ever before to live a full and rich life. Knowing that others have walked this path and it is possible. It begins with the decision to be active, not passive. Don't settle for what is but rather reach for what can be. My favourite advice from Mark Twain sums it up:
Having passion and not settling is what drives our conviction. Don't settle by not living your passion – you need to know what matters.
Stop playing it safe!
Time stops for no one – there are a finite number of days left. Take a risk to get in the game and create the life you want. It is often fear that keeps us playing safe. The fear of what we might lose if we take a risk. And it is true that where there is risk there is often uncertainty and few guarantees. But it is outside our comfort zone where new playing fields lie and where truly amazing opportunities can be found.
My advice for those who want to play a new game is:
Don't get to the end of your life to find that comfortable was not really what you wanted. Have courage and take a risk by standing up, stepping out, and even shouting out to play the game that inspires you. There’s talk about exposure to risk. I think about it as exposure to life. Are you fully exposed to life and playing the game or are you playing it safe? Take a risk towards a life you want. Don't let anyone tell you to live a ‘small’ life. Especially if that is where they are trapped.
Conviction creates an energy – a stamina for taking action in line with our values more consistently. This persistent action helps to maintain the direction you want to go in. Without the action you just have the why (the values) and the what (the passion) but you don't have the how if you don't take action. Some are accused of being all talk and no action. They may speak like they have conviction but their actions are not congruent. Conviction is the fuel that gives belief the stamina so we don't quit before we get to our destination. Resistance is often futile when it comes to being influenced by those with conviction.
I had been thinking about my purpose for a long time. I expressed it to my friend when we were having lunch with the late, great Shelli Whitehurst. I wrote down my dream is that there will be a cure for anyone who suffers from cancer. My purpose is to provide psychosocial support to those with cancer and to their associated loved ones. To move those with zero belief to being True Believers in the redemptive powers of understanding & compassion.
It was aligned with my values. It fuelled my passion. But it was nothing until I finalized my website and put out my first blog. I have now written 12 and I am starting to field enquires about speaking. It is only when we enlist action does our conviction come to life.
What we can achieve with those who believe, has no limits!
In next week’s blog, we will look at the next Superpower of the True Believers.
Love & Peace