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Courage is strength in the face of pain or grief. It’s doing something that frightens you.
We face situations of courage most days. Those situations provide us with choices and the way we respond to those choices determines our future.
You probably know someone that appears very strong. They’re able to make courageous decisions even if those decisions may seem insignificant to others.
Do you feel that you’re a courageous person?
You don’t need to be a hero that goes boldly into war, but you can make changes in your life to make your situation better in the future.
Courage Is Best Done Daily
Before we get into the ways you can add more courage into your daily life it’s important to note that courage is not something you do once in awhile. There are times when you need to be courageous in an important moment, but the real change will come from the things you do everyday.
The change you need to make happens everyday. You can do something once and it maybe feel good, but unless you commit to doing that same thing and other things everyday then you won’t see the change that you really want in your life.
Let’s get into some ways you can be more courageous starting now.
1. Stop Dreaming, Make A Plan
You probably have something that you want to accomplish with your life. Maybe you want to start a business. Maybe you want to go on more trips around the world. It’s pleasurable to have those dreams and it’s okay.
But if you really want those things to come to fruition you need a plan. If you don’t make a plan for the things you want to accomplish and do in your life then those things will continue to be dreams. Over time, you’ll start to feel resentful as a result of your dreams not coming true. You may fall into the trap of blaming circumstances in your life.
Making a plan is not as fun as having a dream. But the real reward in life is realizing the dreams that are most important to you, creating a plan, putting in the work everyday and making your dreams reality.
2. Stop Doing What You Hate
It’s easy to complain. When things in our life aren’t go the way we want it seems to be a natural reaction to find someone that will listen to us complain. It makes us feel better at least in the short-term.
You can go on living life this way if that description fits you, but deep down you probably want to make a change. Taking action on something that you hate is courageous. It may not seem like it, but it is. It’s courageous to do something that frightens you and in a lot of situations we’re afraid to change things because we aren’t sure what the alternative is.
Let’s say you hate your job. You can complain. You can find excuses to convince yourself that you can’t leave, but be courageous and find an opportunity and a plan to leave.
3. Turn A Big Obstacle Into A Small Obstacle
Let’s say you just started a new business. You’re off and running, but you’re not getting the sales that you want each day. You know that you should be making cold calls to grow the business, but cold calling seems like a big obstacle. And it is a big obstacle when you look at it from the viewpoint of needing to make many calls each day and each week.
Take a step back and turn the obstacle into a small one. Instead of thinking about all the calls you need to make simply step back and focus on the one call you need to make first. It may not go well. It’s your first time, but after that first one is done then focus on the next one.
Making hundreds of calls is a big obstacle. Making one call is not so bad.
Turn your big obstacle into a small obstacle.
4. Do Something That Others Scoff At
You know what your situation is. Others can see a few of the things going on with your life on the surface, but they don’t really know the whole story. You have to be comfortable doing things that you know are right, but that others may scoff at.
Let’s say that you drive an old used car. You know that you have other expenses. You know that life is just fine with that old used car. It gets you where you need to go and you can use the money you save on other, more important things.
Some may scoff at you driving around in that old car, but you know that it’s the best thing for your situation.
5. Turn A Big Problem Into A Small Problem
This one looks like #3 on the list, but what I mean by this is that most of the problems in our lives are not as big as we make them out to be. I think we have a tendency to make problems seem bigger so it gives our lives more significance.
I’m not saying that a problem can’t be a big problem. But if you put the problem you’re having into a different perspective you may realize that it’s not really a big problem and is really just a small problem.
For example, you lose your biggest client. That can seem like a big problem. But you’re still breathing. The sun is going to come up tomorrow. Get back to work and find a new client or two new clients. Keep moving forward and don’t dwell on something that really isn’t a big problem.
6. Let Go Of What You Can’t Control
This is a big one. I think it takes courage to live life this way. It’s really easy to hope for others to change so your situation can improve. It’s easy to wish that the universe would give you a break and if only that would happen then you could be happy.
But you’re responsible for your own life. Most situations present a choice to wish that the other person would change, but you have to look at every situation by what you can control.
Maybe your boss has been giving you unnecessary criticism. It would be easy to sit back and think that it’s the boss that needs to change. But you can’t control that. You can control how you react when your boss is around. And you can react by perhaps leaving that job. It’s about what you control.
7. Let Go Of People Holding You Back
This is a tricky one. I think it’s courageous to be there for people that need you. The difficult thing, however, is being able to tell if someone wants you to be there for them. If that’s the case then be courageous and be there for them, but if the person isn’t ready to accept help and they’re holding you back then it’s courageous to move on from them.
This kind of builds on the previous point. Someone may be holding you back in some way, but to some degree you’re also letting them do it. Maybe it’s a client that never seems pleased with the work you’re doing. You’re spending too much time trying to please them and it’s never working. At some point you have to realize that you’re better off walking away.
8. Blow Up Your Daily Routine
Not happy with your life? It might be time to blow up your daily routine.
If you’re not happy then it’s time for some spring cleaning and that means getting rid of things. Cleaning your life is not about rearranging the things you’re already doing. It’s about scrapping everything and starting over from scratch.
This means everything you do during the day. You work. Your morning habits. The food you eat. The drinks you drink. The way you interact with people. Blow it all up and start from scratch by adding the things that really matter to you to your daily schedule.
9. Respond With Kindness
This one is a challenge. Some people just seem to feed off getting a reaction from others. They’ll berate you, insult you and make you feel enraged. The natural reaction is to respond in kind, but that never accomplishes anything. It only feeds the fire on both sides and only negative things happen.
When things get negative and nasty it’s always best to take a breath and respond in the kindest way possible. The other person might continue to respond negatively, but remain calm and kind and look for a way to find a resolution.
10. Send A Note To Someone
We’ll end with one that can change your life and it really doesn’t take too much work.
I’m a golf fan and two of the greatest golfers of all time send regular notes to people.
Arnold Palmer continues to send congratulations letters to every winner in the pro golf world. I think he may even do it for the big amateur events.
Gary Player congratulates all the pro winners each week on Twitter.
It’s a simple gesture, but if you get in the habit of sending a note to someone everyday it can really make a lot of people feel good. And it will make you feel good too.
You can congratulate someone. You can just tell them hello and ask how they’re doing. You can share a funny story. Just send a quick little note to someone. It’s a little step, but it can be frightening and that’s why it courageous to do it.
It’s easy to recognize courage in big situations. But most of the time it’s the little situations in our life that require courage. If we’re able to make changes to our daily lives it can have a big impact and that is the real courage that most of us can benefit from. Try one or two or a few of the things in the list above. If you’re looking to add more courage to your life you don’t have to do it in big ways. It’s the little things that can lead to the change you’re looking for.