“Courage, dear heart.” — C.S. Lewis

Courage

WORK

Biological fear holds us back because it want to protect us, but societal and performance fears can do us more harm than good. The only way to overcome a fear that keeps us from our goal is to tap into our ingrained courage. Don’t think you have it? It’s there.
 
 All of us have moments where we feel resistance putting ourselves out into the world. Whether it’s an announcement, a new experience, sharing a truth, or an asking for help, we can easily jump to placing our self-worth into perceptions instead of building our confidence on knowing what’s best for us. But who determines our fate and our feelings? We do. Owning our businesses, our paths and our actions is our inner courage.
 
 What have I have been doing lately is using a “wine-gulp” or “deep breath” methodology of taking the next step. (I actually don’t drink, but you can easily do it with or without a glass of liquid encouragement next to you.) Face your fearful action, close your eyes, take a deep breath (or sip of wine), and imagine what you would do with calmed nerves and no resistance. Then exhale and feel the action that is right for you… and do it. Click send, post the comment, call the person you have been longing to call. You took a chance. You moved through it. You made it happen.
 
 Business is full of risks and weighing pros and cons can help you determine which are the most meaningful for you pursue. Take a special look at obstacles that feel like barriers to the lands you want to reach as the walls may be filled with false beliefs. Ask yourself what is the real truth of the situation, and try the method above. See where it will take you.

LIFE

Sometimes you can feel confident in business and taking risks, but what have you done lately to let courage show up in your life? We all have little voices in our heads that can keep us from moving forward in healthy and healing ways, but sometimes those voices need to be silenced.
 
 Have you:
 • Asked your significant other for a little more time to take care of yourself?
 • Invited your closest friend for coffee to confide a fear and get more support?
 • Participated in a live event or class to meet new people and hear new perspectives?
 • Tried creating an art piece with no formal training?
 • Apologized to someone you have wronged?
 • Traveled to a new destination you thought you would never see?

 
What if you just did it? How would that accomplishment radically change your world-view? Or the view of others around you? Could this be a road that you were meant to follow and didn’t even know?
 
 Maybe a little voice, a reasoning, a doubt, or an incorrect assumption was holding you back the entire time. Maybe you should accept those influences less often. Just maybe, if you did the opposite, you could invite what you want most into your life.

When you get that extra little nudge, that temporary boldness, use it for good. It can make a world of difference.

“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in
 which you really stop to look fear in the face.
 You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror.
 I can take the next thing that comes along.’
 You must do the thing you think you cannot do.
― Eleanor Roosevelt, 
You Learn by Living: Eleven Keys for a More Fulfilling Life

TAKE ACTION

  1. Make a list of five items you haven’t felt courageous enough to tackle, but want to achieve in your lifetime.
  2. Write down the fear you think is holding you back next to each one. What is the absolute worse that can happen? Identifying the fear can challenge it’s power, making it easier to complete.
  3. Choose the most attainable one and plan out step-by-step how you are going to conquer it. Prepare by designing moments to take “deep breaths,” enjoy a glass of wine, or prove little voices wrong. Create a supportive environment for yourself. Explore ways you can help calm your nerves to make it as easy as possible to complete, such as making the time frame short so you don’t overthink it, or having a friend along for support.
  4. Take one step towards that goal today. You can do this.