Your Noble Adversary

  • Category: Authority Mindset

When you’re building your expertise, your business, your reputation, there will be plenty of people who help you in very direct—sometimes even profound—ways.

And then there are those whom author Stephen Cope calls noble adversaries: “They have challenged you, opposed you, confronted you, and frustrated you— but in ways that have turned out to be salutary for your soul.”

Here’s the thing. Those noble adversaries may drive us bonkers in the moment. There is often no part of us that wants to listen to what they have to say.

And yet, once you know they are truly noble adversaries vs. trouble makers mired in self interest—what a gift they present.

They might be the ones you don’t engage with until you’ve got a plan—and then you let them critique it (steeling yourself for the inevitable constructive feedback, but knowing it will make you better).

Or they’re the ones you consult when you’ve gone off the rails because you know they’re going to point out that which you just can not see or acknowledge.

Every expert and authority-in-the-making needs at least one noble adversary.

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