Archive - April, 2007

Sisu – Sustaining Courage

Silhouette of a man holding his arms up in victory on top of rocks

A while back I came across a company that advertised “Sisu” as a character quality they were seeking in new-hires.  Great word.  It’s what I want to think of being when I start my day. It is who I am and what I aspire to be.  As defined in Wikipedia, It is not momentary courage, but the ability to sustain the same:

Sisu is a Finnish term that could be roughly translated into English as strength of will, determination, perseverance, and acting rationally in the face of

Courage - Japanese characteradversity. The equivalent in English is “to have guts”, and indeed, the word derives from sisus, which means something inner or interior.

Usually sisu means the will and decisiveness to get the things done against impossible odds.  It reminded me of Stephen Covey’s statement that true character is revealed in the crucible of life:

“A man’s true confidence is rooted in the wells of courage, and courage is evidence of character. In the end, a man’s character is revealed in the crucible of everyday challenges.”

Life brings moments when extraordinary courage is required.  Decide.  Have the will. Get things done.

Staying Visionary

Recently I attended a luncheon and had the pleasure of sitting next to Sandy Hilton, Manager of Community and Cultural Services for the City of Folsom.  I asked Sandy about her passion and about the City’s ability to be forward thinking.  Sandy shared her ideas about what she calls, “staying visionary,” and inspiring others to keep looking forward.  Her idea is to foster creativity and encourage looking forward without constraints – like budget or politics.  She said that she always asks “What if” and “Why not?”  and encourages others to do the same.  Marminsgroup_effective_human_folsom