The Power and Courage Behind Caution

The emotional superpower of caution

Are you naturally careful and thoughtful in your approach? Or do you tend to throw caution to the wind? Regardless of your answer, a cautious approach supports moving forward without all the obstacles from an ill-conceived plan. In fact, some of the bravest heroes in history were careful planners. If you answered “yes” to the first question, caution may be an essential part of your courageous acts and brave, bold thinking.  Is caution one of your inner strengths? The Real You needs to know.


Inner Strengths Create a Critical “Leaning”

We’ve been drawing some important distinctions between acquiring good skills and habits versus intentionally developing design-driven inner strengths.

Inner strengths give us something that even a well-rounded set of admirable habits cannot provide. Using your inner strengths gives you stability, direction, and fulfillment.

STABILITY – There is a package of strengths in you that give direction to your life. If there were not, you would constantly change direction every time circumstances changed. A sense of purpose wouldn’t exist. Our core inner strengths stabilize us.

DIRECTION – Our inner design (also known as our InnerKinetics®) gives a tilt or leaning to our lives. This tilt creates a sense of direction and a bias toward preferred ways of thinking, feeling and acting. Whatever way we tilt by nature, we must go. If we had no leaning, and instead were perfectly balanced in our preferences, we wouldn’t have any motivation either. The lack of motivation and direction would paralyze us.

FULFILLMENT – When you lock into the moment to discover you are using your natural inner strengths, you should be able to feel the intensity of focus and pleasure. Repeat this use and you’ll reinforce the satisfaction you feel from the positive use of an inner strength. But don’t confuse the outer rewards you receive for using an adopted strength (a.k.a. an acquired skill) with the inner satisfaction of using a core inner strength.


The Inner Strength of Caution Requires Courage

Did you even know that caution is an inner strength? Or that it takes a great deal of courage to use caution properly? Consider my real-life story about the optimistic flight attendant who saved my son’s future as a seasoned world traveler.[Memory Jog]

That flight attendant’s right use of optimism (one of his inner strengths) was a HUGE gift to several people on that flight. The size of the gift to my family was immeasurable because we travel…a lot! And my son lives with the amazing “SJ” inner design pumping through his veins.

He is designed to travel the world, identify important ways that systems of behavior and thought should change, and then carefully create a plan for taking those bold, change-making steps. These big concepts require some proverbial broad shoulders. For my little guy, all that brilliance and promise of using his inner strengths could have easily been thwarted or choked out from just one bad experience on a plane! It may seem like a big leap for me to take in my thinking, but I personally know several people, with the same inner design as my son, who struggle to overcome a deep-seated fear of flying.


Fear, for an SJ, can set in from reviewing negative history and choosing a negative approach to the details. That’s their caution being misused. And just like any inner strength we each may possess, when misused, it can become a self-made weakness that creates damage in our lives.


And what about the courage it takes to use caution?  When others say “leap,” those who naturally possess caution as an inner strength must be disciplined and withstand the pressure to act immediately. They have to strike a balance between their careful approach and a strong sense of urgency.

Case in point, the pilot who wouldn’t move his plane out of the way so that my son’s plane could finally approach the gate and disembark! What many didn’t know is that the plane holding up the whole process was having a technical difficulty that had to be evaluated. I assure you that very few people were encouraging that pilot to feel free to take his time in inspecting the details of the minor, but malfunctioning plane part!


Caution: A Perspective You Choose or an Inner Strength You Possess?

Anyone can take a cautious approach to solving problems. It’s a smart choice when much is at stake.

BUT, if caution is an innate strength of your inner design, its power takes on an entirely different intensity. In this case, caution is not only your healthy emotional fuel, it’s essential to your disciplined, responsible lifestyle where servant-based leadership thrives. Caution is a “GRAB & GO” inner strength of “SJs.”

When used properly, caution is the positive evaluation of the next move to assure its safety and wisdom. Rather than refusing to move forward where there is danger and risk, it’s the courage and strength to take calculated risks, based on a knowledge of the details.


Find Out if Caution Is One of Your “Grab & Go” Inner Strengths

Are you a careful, cautious “SJ”? Once you learn about the Real You, then you can get on with being the Real You.


  1. Grab a copy of INNERKINETICS by Ray Lincoln which will define more clearly the right use of your Inner Strengths.
  2. Learn how to develop this “GRAB & GO” strength of caution.

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