The other day I was asked what would allow someone to achieve their goals when they seem to be so far away. My immediate gut-level reaction was “bravery”. It was not the answer the other person was expecting. I began exploring how others experienced bravery and their ability to recognize it in themselves.
The most common definition that people came up with was that bravery is when you act without any assurance of an outcome in a situation that has great personal value for you. Take a moment and reflect on this definition. How does it apply to you? Can you remember a time when you had to take action for something that was important to you…without a guarantee that you would get what you want in the way you wanted? Perhaps you experienced this in a personal and intimate relationship. It might have been in a professional engagement. Bravery can be present when you face your fears. Sometimes bravery is present in the simplest of acts, such as getting out of bed when you are in the depths of grief and mourning.
Go back to that time when you were brave. What did you experience? How did you feel it in your body? How did your thoughts organize? What did it take for you to take action? Regardless of outcome, what was your experience when you got to the other side of the experience?
One of my greatest challenges is heights. I hate them. I feel out of control and my heart races, my breathing becomes shallow and my thoughts race. I have made it a personal mission to see if I can conquer this challenge by experiencing bravery. Here you can see me at the top of the Eiffel Tower. It took me 5 visits to make it to the top. The view is breathtaking.