To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe.
-- Anatole France

 

   

The MONTHLY Motivator - July 2015

path

Living with courage

Fear is an obstacle you impose upon yourself. The power of any fear is the power you choose to give it. And just as surely as you choose to fear, you can choose to move beyond that fear. In an instant you can transform the power of fear into the power of courage. Fear will grab your attention, and warn you of very real dangers. Fear will heighten your awareness and compel you to be fully prepared, and those are very good and useful things. But once the fear has done its job, your job is to move forward. Let the fear prepare you, and then quickly do what you have prepared to do. Power, progress, achievement and fulfillment all come from facing your fears. By doing what you fear, you gain rock-solid confidence and vastly increase your effectiveness.

Whenever you feel fear, you are also feeling your potential for courage. Go ahead, feel the fear, and then let that courage of yours spring to life. The fact that you can feel the fear means you also have the courage to get beyond it. Otherwise, the fear would serve no useful purpose. Put your fears to good use by allowing them to ignite your courage. Put that courage to good use by utilizing it to move toward positive, meaningful objectives. Feel the fear and know it means you have the courage.

Admit to being frightened, and your courage will grow. Admit to not knowing, and you will learn. Admit your weaknesses, and you’ll become stronger. Admit your mistakes, and you’ll begin to move past them. Admit you don’t know what to say, and you’ll have said just the right thing. Admit that you’re confused, and you’ll begin to understand. Admit that you’re hurting, and you’ll begin to heal. Admit that you care, and the things that truly matter will grow stronger. Being honest with yourself, with others, with life, can often be difficult and intimidating. Yet honesty is always the most reliable, the most direct route to truly attain whatever you seek, including the courage to move forward.

There is risk in any undertaking, and it is wise to minimize risk whenever possible. Yet to avoid risk completely is the greatest risk of all. When you move forward, there is always the possibility of defeat. Yet if you never move forward at all, then defeat is certain. There will always be plenty of excuses for standing still, for not taking action. But excuses offer no comfort or refuge when viewed in the unrelenting light of reality. What matters is what is done, what is undertaken and what is achieved. Courage is not the absence of fear. Those with the most courage also know the greatest fear. Courage is the determination to act in the face of fear, the ability to learn from fear, to be energized by fear, and to use that knowledge and that energy to move successfully through the fear. Action does not assure success, and yet directed, focused action is the only way to achieve success. We live and grow and prosper and find fulfillment because of the risks we have taken, because of the challenges we have accepted, because of the fears we have transcended. Life is a process of successfully dealing with uncertainty. Our bodies are designed for it, our minds are made for it, and our spirits are energized by the challenges of moving positively ahead, whatever the risks may be.


To continue reading this member-only content, please log in if you are a current subscriber/member, or if you’re not already a member, you can join today for an annual price of just $15 and get immediate access to the full text of this article and many others, plus additional member-only content such as downloadable audio programs and e-books. If you’re not ready to join right now, we invite you to look through our extensive archive of more than 4,000 shorter daily messages, which are fully available for everyone to read.

—Ralph Marston