noun: the ability to do something that frightens one
Courage is something that everybody wants. Fear, no doubt, is something no one wants to encounter. Fear can interfere in every aspect of our life. It controls our sleep, stress levels, and many other things that make life worth living. Courage is like muscle. The more we exercise the stronger it gets. So exercise courage often by trying new things & facing new challenges. I’m not talking courage of public speaking or sky diving. I’m talking about courage that leads to self examination. Courage that can change lives and allows us to live according to our values & even our dreams. How about starting a business you always wanted? Ending a relationship or going deeper emotionally in your current one? Quitting your job for more exciting one? Admitting to mistakes? Sounds pretty scary- doesn’t it? You will definitely need courage if you want to stay committed to doing these things. No one was born with immunity to fear, and anyone can learn to rise above it. Fear can be a great motivator.
We all know that fear is a powerful emotion. Courage means being afraid & acting anyway. So exercise that muscle. Make it a habit. Courage is contagious. Learn to only listen to positive thoughts & discard all negative bias. Try not to hesitate or procrastinate. The longer you allow your brain to process new ideas, the more time you will have to panic & come up with excuses. If you’re struggling to get started, find a role model who can be your North Start. Someone who can guide you & be a constant reminder that it can be done.
Reconcile with your past. Accept your past no matter how ugly it was and leave it well- in the past. Don’t let your past dictate your future, but let it help you go where you want to be. Get outside of your comfort zone one step at a time. It might cause a temporary anxiety but it will be a great first step. In other words, fake it till you make it. You can trick your mind into confidence by pretending that you are confident.
Only by deciding not to let fear take over your life but dare you to try things that scare you, you can realize how capable & courageous you truly are. So how about today be a day to start something that takes you out of your comfort zone. Repeat it again tomorrow & day after that & day after that.
Each time your fear will be diluted of its power and your own capability will take over. Little more each time until you have new legs to walk on.
“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” —Nelson Mandela
Provocative, inspiring, and unflinchingly honest My Grandfather’s Son is the story of one of America’s most remarkable and controversial leaders, Supreme Court justice Clarence Thomas, told in his own words.
His own quiet ambition would propel him to Holy Cross and Yale Law School, and eventually- despite a bitter highly contested public confirmation- to the highest court in the land. In this candid and deeply moving memoir, a quintessential American tale of hardship and grit, Clarence Thomas recounts his astonishing journey for the first time, and plays homage to the man who made it possible. Intimately and eloquently, Thomas speaks out, revealing the pieces of his life he holds dear, detailing the suffering and injustice he has overcome, including the acrimonious and polarizing Senate hearing involving a former aide, Anita Hill, and the depression and despair it created in his own life and the lives of those closest to him. My Grandfather’s Son is the story of a determined man whose faith, courage, and perseverance inspired him to rise up against all odds and achieve his dreams.
I might have an answer. Go skydiving. Believe it or not, skydiving will allow you to do it. Well, more like it forces you to do it. I can guarantee that you will forget your worries. I’ve lived thru such pleasure few months ago. One of the best experiences in my life and one that opened doors to so many new challenges. That crazy moment when you sit on the plane & wait for door to open. And then it happens. The adrenaline is thru the roof. No way out. You’re about to experience life to the fullest & it’s a wonderful feeling.
The worries you are burdened with no longer matter. Marital troubles, financial stressors, misbehaved kids, insecurities at work- all of it is a million miles away once you jump out of that plane. Why? Because all you think about is death & that you will not make it out alive. (Just kidding).
For the first time you don’t have to worry about anything and you are forced to live in the moment. You are looking fear into its eyes & keep repeating same thing over & over…”what was I thinking? My live isn’t so bad. I want to come down”. Finally door opens & you have to jump because you don’t want to chicken out in front of everyone on the plane. So you do it, you take a deep breath, say f..it & you’re out!
Once you reach the point of canopying, your breathing is stabilized & you no longer want to vomit. You start to realize that what you’ve been missing is simply living. Living to the fullest. Skydiving grabbed you by the shoulders & shaken you. You just started living again!
What do you wish to conquer next? How about another fearful experience? This can take many shapes. Whether it’s another adventure, running a marathon, getting a degree or something bigger like leaving your job for better one, starting your own business or pursuing someone that you might think is out of your league. I say go for it & you will approach new challenges with ease. Stop worrying about things that probably will never happen. Stop being terrified of the unknown and start living the best that you know you need to be living. We grow & expand our capabilities by doing difficult things. Take control of whatever is holding your bravery.
“Be brave & fearless to know that even if you do make a wrong decision, you’re making it for good reason” – Adele