The definition of courage is “the ability to do something that frightens one. . . strength in the face of pain or grief.” Pretty straight forward. Lots of times where it gets interesting is to find our courage to say what we feel to the person we love the most.
Even before that. Sometimes we don’t know how we feel because we are too afraid to check in and ask ourselves some difficult questions. Do we have the courage to ask ourselves the tough questions and open our minds and hearts enough to hear the honest answers coming from our deepest being? This is the kind of courage Anais Nin is talking about in the above quote.
Fear. What most of us fear the most is change – real change. If I’m in a relationship that is not nourishing, can I hear my own soul begging for change? If my job is sucking the life out of me, why am I staying? If I have lifestyle habits that are not in my highest good, can I hear my body screaming for change? Look around in your own life. Honestly ask yourself if change is needed.
Lots of time we feel courageous when we are angry. You let someone else have it. They aren’t going to treat you that way. Psychology tells us anger almost always sits on top of fear. If you find yourself often angry, you might want to find your true courage and ask yourself why you are so frightened. For many of us the fear of not being loved or being abandoned is at the very root of all that anger.
Here in the US our current president seems to me to be a very angry man. Whenever I hear one of his tirades, it reminds me of how very afraid he must be. I don’t share his worldview or his positions on just about anything. However, when I can see the frightened man inside I, at least, can find genuine compassion in my heart for him.
So, back to the quote above. Is your life expanding or contracting? Is courage or fear the driving force in your life?