Taking the initiative is taking the first step to request a meeting with the person we like. It is also being able to break the mold and start new personal projects. Or be someone proactive and activate that social skill that combines enthusiasm, intuition, creativity and the willingness to anticipate things and let go of any difficulties.
Admit it… Who wouldn’t want to have all of these characteristics? Even more … Is there someone who has never been told that “you have to take initiatives”? So much so that the term initiative turns almost, unnoticed, into an impetus that we want to integrate into our personality to get what we want.
Virtue, social capacity, leadership capacity… We can define this dimension in various ways, but what is certain is that some have it and others do not. Behind e failing an initiative generally cover the personal insecurity and fear. We fear exposing ourselves, failing and others discovering that we are fallible.
One thing is certain, however: there is no difference between staying where we are and failing. We stay in the same place, on the same ground, where nothing is happening, where we are not advancing socially, emotionally or professionally.
We have to do as our hearts and heads tell us if we want our reality to improve and our wishes to come true. We have to take the initiative.
The keys to taking the initiative and getting what you want
We have all experienced this feeling at some point in our lives: wanting to do something and not knowing how, or just not daring. Asking our boss for a raise, telling someone we love them, making a change in our life… Taking the initiative takes courage.
Above all, it means being willing and having a plan of action . Because beyond what we can believe, someone who takes the initiative does not improvise, he plans. This undoubtedly presupposes the adequate refinement of certain cognitive, emotional and behavioral processes. So here are some strategies that will help us take the initiative.
Emotions in tune with the goal
Some emotions will be disruptive and constraining. Taking the initiative often brings out two very specific emotions: fear and shame. We are afraid of failing and exposing ourselves. These two emotions will be our worst enemies. They must therefore, as such, be deactivated and redirected.
In what way? By establishing a dialogue with ourselves to remind ourselves of what we deserve. We need to realize that fear and shame handicap us as people. They limit our potential and distort our identity. There is an exceptional emotion that always facilitates initiative: enthusiasm.
Plan, observe, seize the opportunity
Taking the initiative is not about taking the plunge without thinking. The pool can sometimes be empty and we could make an avoidable mistake.
- Take the initiative involves taking into account the context and to anticipate the future. You have to look at the situation from different angles and come up with a plan.
- Let’s avoid leaving anything to chance. Luck can accompany us to achieve what we want. However, it should always be borne in mind that luck is created through effort, work and originality.
To take the initiative, we need allies and mentors
It is up to us personally to create the present and shape the future we want. This does not mean, however, that we cannot count on the help and advice of an expert. You certainly have someone in your environment who can facilitate a step.
You may also know someone who has been through something similar and who can advise you. Keep an open mind, listen to opinions, consider other perspectives in order to make a decision by combining all the data possible.
Great victories are always the result of small daily battles
Those who take the initiative do not improvise and risk everything at once. In other words, I can’t go out and say how I feel to someone I like overnight. Daily seduction is indeed part of the work of conquest. Winning the affection of the other day after day.
This is true in any context. I can’t ask my boss for a raise if I don’t show him beforehand that I deserve it. I also cannot radically change my life if I don’t close some doors and open others.
The key, therefore, is to move forward gradually. We must also inject charisma and spirit into each situation, demonstrating in each context what we are worth and what we are.
There will be times when we need to take a step back. But it should be done. It means learning something we didn’t know, calibrating new options, and seeing everything from a broader perspective in order to gain more momentum.
In essence, taking the initiative is not just a matter of courage. It is about knowing how to plan, to be patient and to manage your emotions well in order to gain courage and enthusiasm.
We must not follow our impulses here. On the contrary, it is advisable to act with reflexivity and intelligence. We can all train ourselves to take more initiative and thus be able to land the moon if that is what we want, or create the life we want.