You think leaving a prestigious job is brave? Let’s confront that notion head-on, and make an unsettling narrative shift that dismantles your ideas about courage.

People often commend me for my bravery in leaving the UN. That narrative triggers me – because it’s a distortion of what courage is. I left the UN not out of superior bravery, but out of refusal to stagnate where my purpose was vanishing.

Bravery isn’t just stepping into the unknown; it’s equally enduring the unbearable.

The ones who stay put, tethered to their desks, paralyzed by invisible fears, deserve their due. They’re toiling away in jobs they’ve emotionally clocked out of and that drains their souls, choosing survival over thriving for the rest of their working life. That takes courage too.

Often, stepping away from secure career, particularly in a reputable organization, is glorified as the pinnacle of courage. This narrative is not just flawed – it’s dangerously misleading. The truth? Working just to pay the bills while sacrificing personal fulfillment is another version of courage, one that forces you to face your own inner battles each and every day.

The key difference? Whether you consciously choose your path or let life dictate it for you.

I left without a blueprint, pivoted repeatedly, stumbled, hit rock bottom, got back up, took wrong turns, navigated dead-ends, and took risks – ultimately forging a life that gives me greater rewards and more joy. I’m not claiming it was easy by any measure, but it’s my authentic life.

Here’s the thing: at life’s end, you won’t regret being true to yourself; you’ll regret the time lost to fear and conforming instead of thriving. So, what legacy will you choose? “Financially Secure” or “A Life Fully Lived”?

I’ve made my choice. What about you?

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