“Courage is the characteristic that compels people to face dangerous or challenging situations in spite of fear. People who are courageous take action regardless of their fears. Courage is not just about climbing a mountain no one has ever dared to climb, nor is it only about engaging in dangerous sports, risking life and limb in order to become a hero. Courageous people are not fearless; they do feel fear but simply release it by not dwelling on it.”
“Courage is not the absence of fear. In fact, courage requires fear. There is no need to be courageous if you aren’t afraid of something. There are plenty of things throughout the course of our careers and lives that we will fear. We wouldn’t be human if we did not experience the emotion of fear.”
– Sean Moore from his blog MedExec.
Click HERE for the full article.
Courage is an attitude, something you develop and learn, and as Sean Moore points out above, courage requires fear. Fearlessness is physically and mentally impossible, not to mention naive, because it is not something you can stop, even in the smallest quantities.
No matter how brave I think I am, there is always an inevitable limit that I run into before fear takes over my entire being and catapults me into a galaxy of hesitation.
Should go left or right?
Should we take the plunge or not?
Should stay or leave?
All these life-changing decisions have tapped my shoulder far more often than I would have wanted these past two years and fear has whispered cruel intentions in my ear. My response thus far? Hold on to Courage for dear life while shoving fear aside, but not ignoring it altogether. I think of Fear as being a pesky stalker that will show up at the most inconvenient times whose sole purpose in life is to provoke me into doubting my next move. But as I have learned in the last months, new paths are impossible to calculate, measure, predict, or even plan.
Why am I here?
How did I get here?
Where am I going?
What is my purpose?
What is my mission?
Who am I meant to be?
What more must I sacrifice to achieve the goal?
Can I afford to let go?
What if I change my mind?
What if it goes wrong?
These are all questions riddled with fear, especially of the uncertainty of it all. But the only way to find the answer is to summon up the courage to move forward, let go of the past, and kick ass no matter what comes your way.
This undoubtedly looks great in black and white, but is much more difficult to implement once my mind is made up. It is often just a small thing like changing something in my wardrobe, or taking a photograph. Other times it is a job application, a career change, an investment, which may recur every few years. Then there are the more significant once-in-a-lifetime events destined to test my fortitude like moving to another city (country) or ending a relationship.
At the end of the day, what helps me decide is the idea that courage is founded on caring. I care about the outcome and that is why I hesitate before I move ahead. To be fearless, as many politicians have shown in the past weeks around the world, is to not give a damn about the outcome.