Words like courage and leadership and inspiration are hard to define and quantify, yet we know each when we see examples around us. Sometimes it seems that as a culture we perhaps use them a little too often and by doing so devalue their use when they’re more truly appropriate.
Courage is making difficult, even life altering and often personal decisions; decisions that could come at a high personal cost. Courage is moving forward through exceptionally difficult times, making reasoned, yet difficult choices, often to the benefit of people other than yourself.
Leadership is most effective when it’s leadership by example. By moving forward down a path that is both difficult and yet somehow “correct”, effective leaders show us how to best do whatever it is we do in a way that speaks to us and compels us to grow and/or follow, and in so doing become better than we are.
Inspiration is what happens when you have the courage to put that leadership on display for the world to see. To do so so that others can be moved to perhaps take courage from your courage when faced with situations relatable to your own.
I don’t claim those are the only definitions of those words – far from it. But they’re the definitions that speak to me this morning.
I also don’t normally wax poetic, or at all, about the entertainment industry or its stars.
But I do feel, today, that Courage, Leadership and Inspiration all apply to Angelina Jolie.