Oh why don’t you just … keep silent…?

I have never mastered (heck, even done once in a while successfully) the art of equanimity. I understand it is a great thing to have, I get advised daily to just “let it go” and “go about my own interests”, I understand the rational reasons behind it. Yet, there is a fire in me that threatens to turn my insides into ashes if I continuously shut up about what I believe in.

There is so much writing and talk lately about courageous and vulnerable leadership, about leaders paying attention to people not outcomes, about addressing issues in an open and authentic manner. All buzz words that look great in someone’s speech, on someone’s letters of intention and in job interviews. And at the same time, awfully hard to put into actions, things we shy away from every day, choosing comfort over courage, sometimes hiding behind the curtain of “I am just avoiding further conflict” or “we could never win this one” or “it doesn’t really matter in the grand scheme of things.” What we don’t get is that “the grand scheme of things” is always made up of the things we do, daily, at a smaller scale.

I find myself these days in the middle of quite challenging times professionally, where people whose motives I fail to discuss here, are denigrating projects I have been involved in for years, worked hard to develop, people I have worked with for years and know to be honest and committed. And the choice of people around me and people advising me is just to “be silent and let it pass”, “let’s not get involved.”

I am not sure about others. But I know that this will eat me alive if I allow it. And it is not about who is right or wrong. It is about how silence becomes an accomplice. When we stay silent in the face of slander, finger pointing and lying, we become accomplices and we support the ones who do this, to the detriment of the truth. I will be no part of that. Ever. At any cost.

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