Courage?

Nobody trips over mountains. It is the small pebble that causes you to stumble. Pass all the pebbles in your path and you will find that you have crossed the mountain.
— Unknown
Daring Greatly by Brene Brown
From the Final Thoughts: “Daring greatly is not about winning or losing.  It’s about courage. In a world where scarcity and shame dominate and feeling afraid has become second nature, vulnerability is subversive. It is uncomfortable. It’s even a little dangerous at times. And without question, putting ourselves out there means there is a far greater risk of feeling hurt. But as I look back on my own life and what Daring Greatly [it’s from a Roosevelt speech] has meant to me, I can honestly say that nothing is as uncomfortable, dangerous, and hurtful as believing that I’m standing on the outside of my life looking in and wondering what it would be like if I had the courage to show up and let myself be seen.”
A dear friend of mine sent me the above this week in an email, saying that as she was reading it, she thought of me. I- well, maybe that is the point. I do not see myself as particularly courageous. I have faced some challenges head on because there was no real other way to do so, but if I look back on my life and the almost 43 years that I have been here, I see so many places where I have done just as Ms. Brown describes above, I have stood on the outside of my very own life, looking in, watching as I have given others the control over so much of me.  It’s now time to take control, and one of the few things that i have the ability to control is my weight, my health. It is a one day at a time, one drop of sweat at a time, one pound at a time.
So, is it courage? I still don’t know, but it is about time.
A human being is only interesting if he’s in contact with himself. I learned you have to trust yourself, be what you are, and do what you ought to do the way you should do it. You have got to discover you, what you do, and trust it.
— Barbara Streisand
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One thought on “Courage?

  1. Few books had lately as much impact on my thinking than Brene Brown’s Daring Greatly. There was Susan Cain’s Quite, Deborah Harkness’s All Souls Trilogy and (though I am less than impressed by her personal behavior towards me, I can acknowledge that she is a good writer) Tiffany Reisz’s Original Sinners. I loved Brene Brown in her TedxHouston talk and I plan on writing my ideas down as soon as I have digested Daring Greatly. For now just let me tell you that going out there in all your perceived imperfection, which is truly the most dearing thing and not the sum of your flaws, talking about your victories and setbacks, connecting, sharing what you believe in, living – it is courageous. And those who ridicule or belittle do so from a place of fear and their own shame, with which they can’t deal and hence feel threatened. This seems like a very logic conclusion, but that makes it even harder to believe in as the truth shouldn’t be easy and our own insecurities are deeply inbred. That’s when our network gains importance. Growing and improving isn’t a lone thing. It takes the strength and the common sense of many, who share in love and fear. It’s just like raising a child that takes a village – we are all courageous little children inside.

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