Whenever I look back at the outstanding moments of my life, regardless of my age, my status and what I was doing, the best memories are rooted in courage. When I reflect on the lowest moments (which I try not to), the harshest memories are rooted in disappointment, fear and occasionally shame.
What about you? Like me, you may have said to yourself at some point ‘those were not my finest moments’.
And that’s fine – they probably weren’t. But here we are now, and we all have it within us to turn things around, so let’s focus on that.
Consider all those great ideas you’ve had, all those times you were awesome when no one was looking, when you slayed dragons in your head. Yet there may have been other times when you needed to speak out but you couldn’t even open your mouth. How is it that we can go from that confident person in front of the mirror to a zombie rooted to the ground with lips wired shut?
Simple. Fear triumphed over courage. But make no mistake, courage is still there.
Courage dwells in fear, and if you stand still enough and focus on what you really want for your life, you’ll feel it rush over you.
Courage is deliberate. Courage takes discipline. Courage is changing your outlook. Courage is seeing the cup as neither full nor empty, but focusing on the possibilities that just having a cup brings.
I started this journey years ago, deliberately and carefully choosing to live a life without fear. I identified some of my biggest, darkest fears and insecurities, then started gently to look them in the eye.
I made so many mistakes. There were times I felt strong and bold, and times I did stupid and weak things. There were times I went back to my old ways, bringing disappointment and a belief that I could not fulfil my dreams and do what I wanted to do.
But I know now that it’s okay, because courage lives in fear and resilience is built through disappointments. Once I understood this, things started to happen. My voice, once drowned in the opinions of other people, and my ideas, once overwhelmed by the perceptions of others, started to spring forth and take on a life of their own.
The universe in a way knows when you change, and then it changes too. It begins returning your energy to put out there, rewarding your courage with opportunity, gently urging you on, and reminding you: