“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
What is Courage? Webster defines courage as: mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty.
Courage comes in many different forms and is called upon whenever we confront a difficult, frightening or painful situation. We may feel threatened, vulnerable, intimidated or a host of other not so good feelings. Generally it’s a time when your “fight or flight” instinct comes into play. Courage is fighting, facing the fear rather than being defeated by it.
Courage comes from your heart. It is what steers your heart and guides it on it’s true course rather than adhering to blind loyalty or following others rules and expectations. Courage is born of passion, compassion and love. It’s what you show when you face challenges and conflicts with the strength that comes from love and authenticity. It is not the absence of fear, but stronger than fear. Courage picks you up when you might stumble or fall down. It gets you back on the path.
There are acts that show courage in a grand scale, such as running into a burning building to save lives, Martin Luther King Jr standing up for equal rights, Harriet Truman leading slaves to freedom, Mother Teresa living amongst the poorest helping them learn and grow, our military serving in wars, etc.
Courage does not only come in the grandiose examples. Below are some ways you can and do show courage in everyday life.
- Trying a new restaurant, new food, new adventure
- Taking a new route to work
- Standing up for yourself or someone else in need
- Asking for a promotion or raise
- Leaving an abusive relationship
- Leaving a job that you hate, is no longer satisfying, etc
- Asking someone out on a date or making a new friend
- Making a presentation
- Asking for help
There are many more examples, but you get the picture. Engaging in small acts of courage can help you strengthen your courage and stay on a path that is true to your authentic journey.
Be guided by your courage, it is your companion and the energy of truth inside of you.