The Cole's Notes on Courage

Updated: Feb 12

There are moments in our lives that clearly demonstrate the separation between being in a given state and feeling a certain way.

How do you figure?

Anytime you’ve had to push through fear because the situation required you to act.

Three examples:

  1. Terrible case of arachnophobia. Yet, still managing to trap the spider and set it free outdoors. Why? It needed to be done.

  2. Crippling fear of public speaking. Yet, still communicating your arguments clearly when push came to shove. Why? The message was too important to stay silent.

  3. Self-conscious about your level of insight on a given topic. Yet, still providing your point of view and asking thought-provoking questions. Why? You want to create value. You know this requires a clear understanding of facts to ensure you offer a solution that helps.

While seemingly mundane all the above are acts of courage.

Could you define an act of courage, in a nutshell?

An act of courage stems from three distinct cerebral activities.

The first is acknowledging your fear, giving yourself permission to feel it. The second is analyzing the consequences and having a real sense of the landscape in front of you, and the last activity stems from the decision that you make. Specifically, deciding that you care enough about what’s in front of you to take a step forward, despite the fear.

Et voilà, the quintessential recipe to courage.

The secret people often keep to themselves is courage is the soil that nourishes confidence.

Building confidence in your ability to survive and thrive takes small acts of courage, seizing the moments, big or small, that require you to push through your fears. In time, bit by bit, you’ll find yourself taking on bigger and harder challenges with higher degrees of confidence. Having a track record of experiences to draw from, that demonstrate you have what it takes within you to push through, is confidence that is both grounded and rooted in fact - it’s hard to shake.