Why we should choose courage over comfort



To have courage, is the ability to do something that frightens us. Everybody’s need or desire for courage is different – it might be getting out of bed each morning, walking into the board room, hitting the gym or chasing your dreams. Whatever it is, it matters – and you are worthy of that courage.

The origin of the word courage is cor – the Latin word for heart. In one of its earliest forms, the word courage meant “to speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart.”

Over time, this definition has changed, and today, we typically associate courage with heroic and brave deeds. I agree with Dr. Brene Brown, New York Times bestselling author and University of Houston research professor when she says that the above definition fails to recognise the inner strength and level of commitment required to have courage.

Courage is sometimes…

> a matter of life and death: emergency and servicemen and women risking their lives daily to help others.

> impulsive and emerges from nowhere: someone running into rough seas to save a stranger from drowning.

> planned: through careful deliberation and preparation when making bold choices.

Courageous people are passionate and purposeful; regardless of whether they exhibit life and death courage, impulsive courage or planned courage. Courageous people believe in themselves, they know who they are and what they stand for. They have strong values, recognise their personal capabilities, and are confident in meeting the challenges that lie before them.

What does Brene Brown say about courage?

In the  Brené Brown: The Call To Courage Netflix special Brene explores how to choose courage over comfort in a time and culture of fear and uncertainty – which in my opinion, in today’s current global COVID-19 climate, is something we should all stop and seriously think about. Brene explores the value of courage and vulnerability, saying “the key to whole-hearted living is vulnerability. You measure courage by how vulnerable you are”. According to Dr. Brown’s research, choosing courage and vulnerability opens us up to love, joy and belonging, and brings us closer to what she calls, “whole-hearted living.” It changes the kind of partner, parent and professional we are when we live brave and authentic lives.

We learn courage by being courageous!

For some of us, courage or courageous behavior doesn’t come easily. Fortunately, courage is a teachable and learnable skill – much like a muscle that we can exercise.

Most of us aren’t born courageous, so we shouldn’t expect to magically acquire it without practice. As Brene Brown writes in her book The Gifts of Imperfection, “Courage is…a habit, a virtue: You get it by courageous acts. It’s like you learn to swim by swimming”.

Today’s world is filled with uncertainty. This uncertainty might bring feelings of anxiety, loneliness and stress, especially if you are in social isolation like many of us.

So, let’s all be like Brene Brown, and start off every day by putting our feet on the floor and saying, Today I will choose courage over comfort. I can’t make any promises for tomorrow, but today I will choose to be brave”.

Because you are courageous, and you deserve all that will become by being brave.

All my courageous love,

By Amanda Morton


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