5 Steps to Becoming More Courageous

A quality that many of us wish we had more of is courage. Michael Hyatt said, “Courage is not the absence of fear. Courage is the willingness to act in spite of my fear.”  Some wish they had more courage when facing new situations, while others wish they had the courage to try daring new things. Still others simply wish they had the courage to communicate what they are thinking.

In order to add more courage to your cocktail of life, you are going to have to do a little work.  Unlike fear, courage isn’t an emotion – it’s an action, a behavior. Like any behavior, practice makes perfect. You have to build this muscle. Listed below are 5 steps to help you build up your strength and start living more courageously.

  1. Get clear on where you want to be more courageous – Is it standing up to a demanding boss, an outspoken friend, or stating your needs to your partner? Perhaps you want to put yourself out there to really catapult your business, step up to a leadership position, or speak at a networking function. You have to have a clear picture of where you want to exhibit this trait. You may have several different scenarios in mind, but focus on one at a time.
  2. Note all the fears associated with this situation – Now that you have a situation in mind, what are all the ways being courageous could go wrong? Seems counter-productive, I know, to go here first, but you have to know exactly what the demon you’re fighting looks like. “I’m afraid my boss will fire me if I stand up to her,” “I’m afraid my husband will get mad,” “I’m afraid people I’m speaking to will think I’m an idiot.” Seriously, write these down!
  3. Ask why – Why would that person be upset with you? Why would they react that way? Take the speaking to a group example: you’re afraid people will think you’re an idiot. Why? Because they’ve heard all this before. Well, now that you know what the problem is, you can take action (and some courage) to fix it. Ask the group leader what other speakers have presented, then you can research that speaker and ensure your content is different and exciting.
  4. Visualize – You can do this two ways. Imagine someone who would slay a situation like this, real or fictional, and picture how they would handle the situation. Or, you can visualize how you will handle the situation – confidently and courageously.
  5. Do – Practice, practice, practice. You can keep visualizing over and over and over, or you can get a buddy to help you practice, but action is necessary to build that muscle. In some cases, you can take baby steps. If you want to build up the courage to say, “no” more, start with little things and work your way up to the big ones.

Just like any other muscle, none of this is going to feel comfortable at first, but let me tell you, if you keep following these steps, they WILL become more comfortable. When you are courageous, you knock your own socks off. You will communicate better and resentment will no longer live at your place (won’t that be nice!!).

Share in the comments a time you were courageous and how that turned out for you.

If you are really serious about becoming more courageous, than an Empowerment Session is for you! Take advantage of the complimentary strategy session!

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email April@AuthenticLifeChronicles.com 

Comments

  1. I love that you point out that courage is not an emotion.. it should seem obvious, but its not.. and because we can’t just feel it often, and have to push to get there that makes it so hard to tap into. I think we all want and need a little more courage from time to time! Going to remind myself to act on it.

  2. >> “When you are courageous, you knock your own socks off.” << love this line so much! 🙂

    i moved to a foreign country 5 months ago, and feel as if i have to be courageous every.single.day. so i'm putting your #5 do! (practice, practice, practice) advice into play (and building up my strength)!

    • April, you continue to be a shining example of courageous behavior!! Keep knockin’ all our socks off!!

  3. Lots of valuable food for thought here April. I love how empowering your blog post is, with your encouragement to build the courage muscle. I’ve often found that people either think they’re courageous or not. Thanks for all the tips.

    • I’m so glad you enjoyed this topic, Angela! You’re exactly right – we do tend to take a more “either/or” approach to qualities like these. It’s not outside of any of our reach! Thanks for commenting!

  4. Oh April, you’ve done it again! You are not only a stellar writer, your way of breaking down big life concepts so they suddenly are easy to grasp always astounds me. This post about courage is no exception!

    I love #2—“Note all the fears associated with this situation” – yes! “You have to know exactly what the demon looks like.” So true, and too often we are taught to only stay positive, but that can mean we don’t face our fear, and reframe it.

    I say #5 all the time to myself and my peeps: “Do – Practice, practice, practice.” My grandfather told me as a very little lass, “We learn my doing.” We can visualize—and yes it’s important, and then we must do, take action, because that is essential.

    You help me anchor in so many positive lessons. Thank you xox 🙂

    • Jul’s, you are so sweet! I’m so glad these posts offer such value to you. #5 is my favorite and most challenging one, too! Your grandfather was a wise man, as are you!! Thanks for all the love!! <3

  5. Hi April! I love the focus this brings; my tendency is to let it percolate into other areas and become more difficult to identify exactly what the problem is. At 50 I decided to leave my job and start my own business. I took the leap of faith and so far, so good. It’s not easy but OH SO WORTH IT!

    • Michele, that is some SERIOUS Badass COURAGE!! Good for you!! That’s what it’s about – courage to take back control of your life!! Your Facebook page is GORGEOUS!! Can’t wait to see how you evolve! Thank you for sharing your wonderful example of courage!! Best of luck on this new, awesome venture!

  6. Awesome article, April! Great job of really debunking the myths about what courage is. This is something that will be really helpful for my audience.

  7. Another great post. Points 2 and 4 are super important and I know I need to work on these. I love your ideas on visualising. That is a great tip. Thank you!

    • So glad you liked the post, Reena! Visualizing often has so many benefits. I end up asking myself why I don’t apply it to more areas of my life. Work in progress, as they say! 🙂

  8. Amazing post! I love how you say courage is a muscle that we can practice using and it’ll get easier as we go! Thank you for the great post 🙂

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