Get More Courage

The word COURAGEOUS has come up several times in the last few days.

A friend sent me an email this morning telling me she is choosing to be courageous and is leaving a relationship she is no longer happy in.

I got a note from my mentor who told me it was courageous of me to reach out to her when I did, telling her what was REALLY going on. (Funny, because I didn’t feel courageous at all.)

This is picture of my friend Shonda and I running a 5K last week. It was her first one. I remember being so scared before running my first race with thousands of other people. Brave, right?

I know for myself, if I am going through a hard time and feeling sad/angry/frustrated, the last adjective in the world I would use to describe myself is courageous.

I can quickly move into beating myself up for not being stronger/braver/happier. Why can’t I just let it go and get over it?

It’s easy to interpret your feelings about being stuck as a sign of weakness.

We can quickly conclude, “I am not courageous or strong, because if I was, I wouldn’t be feeling so sad and crappy.”

We think, “If I were really brave, I would be taking non-stop action and not letting anybody’s opinion stop me.”

But, my love, this is a false notion of bravery. So very false indeed.

How To Get More Courage

We all go through difficult times in life. Tara Brach, one of my favorite teachers, talks about the DOUBLE ARROW that we all experience during challenging times.  

The FIRST ARROW comes from is life itself in the form of a hard time, a break up, a disappointment, an injury or an illness. This is part of being alive.

However, we often are responsible for the SECOND arrow. This is the arrow I describe above.  The internal voice that says, “Why can’t I handle this? How did I attract this? Why can’t I get it right?” The second arrow is one of self-criticism.

So imagine this: You are walking around with two arrows in your side. One life gave you and one you gave yourself.

And yet, you still go out into the world each day and do your very best. You take even the smallest action, or a very big one. You run your business. You show up for the audition. You put yourself out there. You let yourself cry. You let yourself be real.

All this, with TWO ARROWS in your side!

This is BRAVERY.

Courage is not giving up in the face of your own pain. Not giving in despite your own doubt and fear. 

(We will talk about how to stop giving yourself the second arrow in another post, but for now, recognize how strong your are for all you do.)

Lately, I feel like the word FEARLESS is a lie. Who doesn’t feel afraid? Who isn’t scared about unknown parts of their future? To be fearless is a false notion of what is possible. To be BRAVE is something we ARE each and everyday.

In order to get more COURAGE, you must recognize the courage you already have.

LEARNING HOW TO RECOGNIZE WILL INCREASE THE SIZE OF YOUR…  COURAGE.

Fill in this sentence:

Every day, I am afraid of ___________ , and every day I show COURAGE by ________________.

Take a moment to think about this.

Now, I would love for you to tell me specifically about one thing you are afraid of each day and how do you show courage in the face of that fear, regardless.

Remember, in order to get more of what you want, you have to acknowledge how much of it you already have. I am dying to hear from you.

Share your thoughts, below.

Love,
Erin

 

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