This Is What Makes You Brave

Linzi
Linzi

I’ve always struggled to call myself a brave person. I hold myself back, I take my time. I stop when I should go, leave when I should stay, and say no when I should say yes. I often experience overwhelming levels of anxiety, uncertainty, and doubt over this.

When I think of brave people, I think of people who travel the world, take huge risks in the name of their dreams, and live full lives under seemingly empty circumstances. But I forget to take note of the little things that make us brave – the little things that open windows instead of doors and shine like a lantern instead of a light bulb.

You got out of bed this morning, despite your intimidating to-do list, the job you hate, your broken heart, or the depression that makes it difficult to do much of anything.

That makes you brave.

You’re still alive in spite of everything you thought would kill you. You lived through disappointment and disaster. You lived through abandonment and alienation. You lived through lack and loss. You have lived through every single hard thing that has come your way.

That makes you brave.

You see your mistakes as opportunities to learn and your failures as opportunities to grow. You took risks and tried new things with no way of knowing if your efforts would pay off in the end. You didn’t let setbacks and disappointments stop you from chasing what you want. You got knocked down a thousand times and always chose to stand back up.

That makes you brave.

You fell in love. You opened your heart and soul to someone who made you feel things at a depth you never knew existed. You gave them the power to break you, and maybe they did. But you gave them something that you know will someday be reflected back to you by someone who sees your brilliance and is ready for the amount of love you have to offer. And you still have faith in finding that person.

That makes you brave.

You asked for forgiveness and forgave yourself when you were wrong. You gave others a chance, and you gave yourself a chance. You remind yourself that perfection does not exist in a world where the pressures of society often tell you it should.

That makes you brave.

You made a difficult choice instead of not making a choice at all. You recognized what you need and eliminated what you don’t need. You were honest with yourself and others, even when it hurt. You faced fears, challenged boundaries, and worked hard when it mattered most.

That makes you brave.

You loved when you felt like hating and gave when you felt like taking. You chose compassion over spite and generosity over selfishness. You took the high road and were intelligent enough to know that fighting fire with fire will only create an explosion.

That makes you brave.

You chose passion over logic, adventure over comfort, and joy over stress. You know that life is too short to not pursue the things you want, that it doesn’t matter what other people think, and that your life is yours and yours alone. You broke rules that didn’t make sense and started trends that did.

That makes you brave.

You set a goal and tried your best to achieve it. Maybe you did, and maybe you didn’t. Either way, you set an honest intention and took steps forward instead of backwards. Win or lose, there was action and productivity. Win or lose, there was passion and enthusiasm. Win or lose, there was learning and growth

That makes you brave.

You put one foot in front of the other today. Maybe someone hurt you. Maybe something discouraged you. Maybe life felt a little heavy and the events of the day pushed against you. But no matter what, you kept moving – no matter how slowly.

And that makes you brave. TC mark

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