What does being brave mean to you?
Yesterday, a fellow blogger shared a post with me after reading what I wrote in Fears, Phobias, and Fresh Starts. The post she shared was all about a woman who was actively working on overcoming her phobia of snakes. I couldn’t believe this woman’s bravery—it was amazing what she had accomplished when she set her mind to it. I was inspired by the courageous steps she took to conquer this fear, and wondered if maybe one day I could do that too. But deep down inside, there was still this little part of me that whispered, “I could never do that. I could never be that brave.”
Do you ever tell yourself those words? Do you ever look at an opportunity in front of you, and instead of going for it, you start to talk yourself out of it? “I could never do that. I could never be that brave.”
“I could never be brave enough to apply for that job opening.”
“I could never be brave enough to go bungee jumping.”
“I could never be brave enough to recover from my eating disorder.”
“I could never be brave enough to open up about my past.”
“I could never be brave enough to let people see the real me.”
If that’s you, then I want to disagree with you today. In fact, I am disagreeing with myself! The truth is that when I look at the facts, when I look at the history of my life, I realize that I already am brave. And you are too. I mean, think about it. We’ve made it this far, right? And along the way we have had to take leaps of faith and steps that required courage. We have demonstrated true bravery to get here. We just forget that. And I think it’s time for a reminder.
So today I want to share with you 3 reasons why I believe that you can be brave right now, despite your circumstances.
- You are not alone.
No matter what you are going through right now, or what you’ve been through in the past, you are not alone. Since I started blogging at braverthanbefore.com just over one week ago, I can’t even count the number of times I have heard someone tell me that, because of one of my posts, they have realized that they are not alone in their struggle. We can find strength in numbers when we recognize that other people are navigating the same obstacles we are. You can be brave today because you are surrounded by a community of people who are fighting this fight with you.
- You’ve done it before.
Like I said earlier, we’ve made it this far, right? Here’s the thing. Whether you realize it or not, you have made courageous choices that have brought you to where you are today. I love what Annie F. Downs says in her video series titled Lets All Be Brave. She states, “Courage says that you face the thing that’s right in front of you. You never know when it’s preparing you for something else.” We have all done this in life. We have all had to face pain. We have all had to face loss. We have all had to face uncertainty. The point is that we faced it! We fought through it. And we are surviving. You can be brave today because you have done it before. Face the thing that is right in front of you today, because facing it will give you the strength you need to face tomorrow.
- You are loved.
There is nothing more true than this statement. Maybe you feel like you are all alone in the world. Maybe you feel like you don’t have a single friend on this planet. If that is you today, I want to tell you that you are loved. I believe in a God who loves you more than you will ever comprehend or even be able to imagine. And when you know (and I mean really know) that you are loved by the all-powerful God of the universe, suddenly the obstacles start to look a little bit smaller. You can be brave today because God loves you, He knows the end of your story, and He is fighting for you.
Let’s pay attention to what we are saying to ourselves today. Let’s decide that we won’t talk ourselves out of making the brave choice. Let’s refuse to look at the obstacles and say, “I could never do that. I could never be that brave.” Instead, let’s remind ourselves that we are not alone, that we’ve done it before, and that we are loved.
What would you add to the list? Why do you believe we can all be brave today?