Some people seem to have great courage. They ski down mountains, jump out of planes, write books, enter competitions, run marathons. They aren’t timid – they show up big. They have “adventure courage.”
But there is another kind of courage – the courage to show up big to each of the days of our lives, live who we are and bring our best to the world. This kind of courage accepts life as it shows up, sees life as opportunity, and is ready to be part of whatever comes our way. This is “life courage.”
Most of us don’t have “life courage” because we have been trained and conditioned to fear our world. We are afraid of not having enough, of losing our jobs, of becoming sick. The news makes us concerned for our kids, for our parents, for the people caught in political unrest. We are told to fear terrorists, severe weather and changes in the economy. Fear doesn’t breed security; it doesn’t make us better or wiser. Instead, it simply makes us miss out on life’s opportunities and live small.
What if instead of moving through life afraid of so many things, we actually looked at life as an adventure – one that changes each day and gives us the ability to direct how it goes? What if we could stop checking out, living small and limiting our dreams because we are afraid?
Brave people trust themselves and trust life. They know that they are infinitely wise and infinitely capable if they use their energy to focus on living life, not on hiding from it. Courageous people have taken the time to understand what they are good at, passionate about and what matters to them. Their “life courage” comes from using what they know of themselves and their world to make good choices – choices that help them show up confidently and competently to life. Both confidence and competence encourage courage. And we all have access to this.
As the world looks to keeps us afraid and in conflict, we can see that this is just a story. We can see that whatever comes our way is something we can figure out, work with others to solve or learn to just accept; fear doesn’t have to be part of it. When we see how we fit in our world, we don’t need to be afraid of it. Fear goes away the clearer we become in who we are and in our strengths and abilities. The more we all collectively know ourselves and trust in our abilities, the better able we are to put today’s fears behind us. With fewer fears, we increase the possibilities and opportunities to transform our world. We must be courageous enough to see this and to work towards it.
Don’t be afraid of life. We must look it straight in the eyes, be grateful for it and believe that we can figure out how to show up well to it. When we use our energy to solve, create and inspire instead of fear, we have access to solutions that have previously evaded us. We can start to undo the culture of fear and replace it with confidence and possibilities.
Nothing great ever comes from hiding. Solutions come from meeting challenges head on and trusting in our collective genius, not our collective fear. Fear is a choice, but then again, so is courage. Remember, you are braver, wiser and more amazing than you realize. So commit the time and effort to realize it and everything changes.