Daring Greatly

#DaringGreatly #WeWereMeantToBeCourageous #DoThatThing #LiveLikeThat #ItsInEveryOneOfUs #BelieveBravely #BeYou

Daring Greatly - LinkedIn

The phrase Daring Greatly is taken from an inspiring and oft-quoted passage of President Theodore Roosevelt’s speech, “Citizenship in a Republic.” More-commonly referred to as “The Man in the Arena,” the speech was given at the Sorbonne in Paris, France, on April 23, 1910, and has since served as a rallying cry for individuals, organizations, and even generations, to Dare Greatly.

Man In the Arena

I can’t recall the first time I read those moving and comforting words. It seems like the line “It is not the critic who counts” has been a part of my positive-self-talk lexicon for as long as I can remember. Over the last few years, however, the phrases Daring Greatly and Dare Greatly have resonated with me in a new and very profound way and have become integral tenets of my core beliefs and vision. Even a way of living that I aspire to.

And, apparently, over 115 years after “The Man in the Arena” speech was delivered, I am not the only one whose vision is informed and life and work are inspired by the stirring messages of the speech.

Recently, a prominent series of Cadillac ads – both print and broadcast – have put the heart of “The Man in the Arena” speech at their heart. Cadillac’s uncredited, truncated version of the speech appears in their marketing assets as follows:

It is not the critic who counts; The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena,

Who strives valiantly; Who errs, who comes short again and again;

Who knows great enthusiasms; Who spends himself in a worthy cause;

Who at the best knows in the end the triumph of achievement, And who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.

At Cadillac, we dare greatly. Because we believe that only those who dare,
drive the world forward.


Hey, it’s hard to miss when you have great material!

Former BYU and three-time NFL Daring Greatly - Surround Yourself BookcoverPro Bowl tight end Chad Lewis shared how the speech influenced and impacted him in a number of roles in his life in his 2009 book, “Surround Yourself With Greatness.”

But for me, in addition to just re-sharing and honoring the timeless inspiration and wisdom of “The Man in the Arena,” what I want to share is the insightful way that bestselling author and vulnerability champion Brene Brown was inspired by and has used the wisdom of “The Man in the Arena” as the foundation for her groundbreaking and life-transforming teachings and advice on living vulnerably, courageously, and wholeheartedly by Daring Greatly – which insight has in turn influenced so many to Dare Greatly, including myself.

Daring Greatly BookIn her book “Daring Greatly,” Brene reports, “The first time I read this quote, I thought, This is vulnerability. Everything I’ve learned from over a decade of research on vulnerability has taught me this exact lesson. Vulnerability is not knowing victory or defeat, its understanding the necessity of both; it’s engaging. It’s being all in.”

Yes, to Dare Greatly is to be all in. All in and all us. Vulnerably. Courageously. Wholeheartedly. Whatever that looks like for us. Regardless of what the critic – any critic, including our own frightened, ego-driven, shame-wrapped selves – says.

As Brene shares, “There really is ‘no effort without error and shortcoming’ and there really is no triumph without vulnerability.” “Daring greatly is not about winning or losing. It’s about courage.”

It’s about risking it all for a dream that sometimes only we can see. Standing alone and standing tall for something that we believe in. Fighting the fight – fighting our fight – because we are willing to own it; because it is ours.

Regardless of who is watching.

Regardless of what others say. Or think. Or we think they are thinking or saying.

Regardless of whether we “win” or we “lose.”

Daring Greatly is about showing up authentically in our own lives – however that looks – and taking on the life we were born to live.

Living bravely as ourselves.

Singing our song.

Writing our story.

Being. Being Us. Daring Greatly.

Believe Bravely; Dare Greatly,


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