The Misunderstood Emotion
Over the past year I have learned a lot about courage, and what I have discovered is, how misunderstood courage is.
Let me explain. When I say courage what comes to mind? What imagery do you see? For most of my life courage has been about heroes and warriors. As a boy, courage was charging into the fray of battle fearless, and unafraid of dying or enemies. Courage was big and bold, strong, abrasive, daring and willing to die for another. Courage was idolized in my eyes as one who could be almost immortal, even a superpower in and of itself. There were many people in my life I deemed as courageous, and if I did not look like them, I did not have it.
As I matured, and have been tested and faced with my own battles, I have come to realize that although courage is all that I just described, courage is also so much more. I believed that courage was something you had or didn’t have, and some just inherently had it. This concept of courage could never be met, I always fell short my expectation of courage. I never stepped out, because I was waiting to get to the appropriate level of courage deemed necessary, as if courage was some kind of magical leveling up. To often I was left in a waiting game for something that would never come.
Courage is not just about being strong, powerful, fearless, or knowing what to do at the right moment, and often courage is mislabeled as someone who is confident and appears to have it all together.
In my life, as I have experienced moments in life when courage was called upon, I found that courage is also patient, it is kind, often it’s found in the quiet moments and actions we make every day. Many times courage is masked by the way we love others, and usually many people don’t see the courageous ways we love others.
I firmly believe it takes just as much courage to wait, in silence and peace, as it does to scream and run into the throes of battle. Courage is not just about grit and determination, courage is also about choosing to love when it hurts. It’s moving forward in life even when you get steamed rolled over. Courage is the ability to see hope on the other side, and believe that it is good.
Courage is not the sum of what you can do, it has nothing to do with how well you can perform or achieve. Courage is more about giving yourself grace to be yourself. That means even when others think you’re crazy or silly, even when it means making mistakes, or falling short, or falling in love, or coming off as driven and blind to “reality.”
You have courage, more than you know. Stop waiting for the right “amount” of courage. Everything you need, you have, that is - the love and grace to be you. As I love to say -
You do you.