Be Kind But Be Fierce

Jun 09, 2023

Be kind but be fierce is a quote by Winston Churchill and is one of my favourites.

After over 30 years of personal development coaching It is these qualities I aim at for my clients.

Be kind but be fierce.

Most of them want to integrate these two seemingly opposing qualities into their lives.

So many guys have trouble with this quote.

Be kind but be fierce have become looked upon as polar opposites and that you can’t have kindness if you are fierce.

In a world of an imbalanced value system that constantly says

“Just be kind” we wonder why so many of us end up as victims by our families, friends, work and especially by ourselves.    

It also means any dreams and ambitions we have fall by the wayside because we were unable to protect what really matters to us.

This is because we are busy seeking validation, people pleasing or simply just too frightened to do the right thing.

If you can’t or won’t embrace a harder edge, it’s probably because you’ve been told it’s wrong, only ruthless people have this quality we get told.

This is taught in school, at home and often, as many clients have told me, through their Religious upbringing.

Just be kind.

Theres nothing wrong with this advice but it remains incomplete advice and can leave someone open to tyranny and manipulation.

When it comes to historical figures, we have convinced ourselves of the gentle lamblike nature and existence of men like Jesus, Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr.

This is nonsense.    

These men were tough. They were in reality the upper echelons of resilience and strength.

They had to be, and they knew from the beginning that this would be required.

Their life was their message and they were willing to die for it.

Take the quote from Jesus in the gospels of Mathew where he said:

Do not think I have come to bring peace on Earth. I have not come to bring peace, but the sword.”   

The sword to Jesus was likely a metaphor to his world stance and message, but regardless, does this sound like the words of a harmless man?

He knew he was going to ruffle more than a few feathers and actively set out to do so.    

It is Harmless men that needlessly suffer. They suffer from their own inability to be fierce.

The bigger the mission the more capacity for fierceness one needs and when blended with kindness you end up with a potent mix of moral efficiency that is absolutely world changing.

The weak man only talks and acts to serve himself.  The strong man cultivates kindness and fierceness for the good of all.

 The truth is, thinking about fierceness evokes fear which is why it’s avoided. It means we have to be willing to upset people.

This is inevitable. Even with a positive dream or mission you will upset certain people no matter how much you try to avoid it.

In fact if you are setting out not to upset anyone, you will set your life compass towards mediocrity and likely end up a victim, resentful and frustrated.    

Hate and criticism are nothing personal. They are just individual perceptions of how people see the world and how they want it to be. Ultimately they do this to make themselves feel more secure.

The truth is when people are offended they have the opportunity to recognise this and becoming stronger.

Few do though, because they are invested in their jealousy of other peoples courage or success.    

Be warned though, you cannot be deliberately disrespectful and harmful and not expect severe consequences.

Those that behave this way do so for themselves, not for the benefit of anyone else.  This is weakness disguised as confidence.

When it comes to opening the way to fierceness we need to understand it is only fear that stops us taking on bigger things and being better ourselves.   

It is to focus on what we might lose if we make a stand. Our friends, our relationships and parental validation. 

Well, if you lose them, you never had them in the first place.

What we gain though is a life worth living, that actually gives you the ability to overcome and embrace hardships and suffering as a way to uncover the most incredible potential we contain.

Fierceness integrates into and drives conviction, belief, discipline, justice and truth.

This is why so many men study martial arts, because they know they need a strong character and a fierceness of spirit.

Men need the capacity to be a stand alone dangerous man. An individual capability for chaos but has it under control, so it can be harnessed for good actions. 

It is these men that will be just, strong, compassionate and someone of integrity.

Kindness and fierceness will change not only your life but will change the world around you into one where cruelty and cowardice cannot rule.   

This is why great men and women walked in the world with kindness and fierceness.

They knew to have a worthy kingdom, it needed to consist of worthy people.

To really love, protect, to be just and brave requires fierceness.

So do be kind but cultivate fierceness in your life too.

You will be better for it and so will the world around you.

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