Leadership Strategies - Dare to be a Rebel – Daring to be Yourself

Discover Your Inner Rebel!
“What seems different in yourself; that’s the rare thing you possess. The one thing that gives each of us his worth, and that’s just what we try to suppress.” - Andre Gide (1869-1951)

I believe there is a “rebel” quality within each of us that is shut down by voices from the past telling us to keep quiet, don’t make so much noise, children should be seen and not heard, don’t rock the boat, your idea sucks, you’ll never make it, and on and on about how to live and be happy based on our learning experiences.

Believe it if you must, but what would life be like to be curious about your “rebel” nature?” My hunch is that many famous people who failed or were rejected a number of times were in touch with their “rebel” trait. It is the instinct that doesn’t accept the judgments of authority figures/institutions. For example:


  • Albert Einstein failed the entrance exams to the Swiss Polytechnic Institute.

  • Alex Haley received rejection letters on short stories he submitted to magazines for eight years.

  • Meredith Vieira, NBC Co-host of Today Show, was fired from a television station in Providence, Rhode Island.

  • J.K. Rowling's first Harry Potter book was submitted to twelve publishing houses and rejected.

  • Muhammad Ali graduated 376th from a high school class of 391 students. Isn't he the greatest example of being a rebel and making a difference!

  • Ted Turner, Eddie Murphy, and Candice Bergen were all expelled from school!
When you look at a sample of these famous people, you get a sense of their commitment, passion, and persistence to be a rebel in spite of rejection. They weren’t satisfied to let their dreams die and play small. Another glaring feature in their success was a burning desire – they were willing to play big. What about you?

“A musician must make music, an artist must paint, a poet must write, if he is to be ultimately at peace with himself.” - Abraham Maslow

Rebels make a difference!

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