I used to think that fear and bravery were polar opposites. In my mind, they were enemies who couldn’t co-exist, and I thought that to have one meant you couldn’t possibly have the other.
If you felt fear, you were a coward and if you were brave, you were by definition, fearless. Simple as that, right?
Well, not exactly. My perspective on that has changed a bit recently. I’ve realized that perhaps instead of being mutually exclusive, fear and bravery may be necessary partners.
One of my favorite phrases is “do it afraid.”
What do I mean by that?
If you have fear without bravery, you are in a very dangerous position. You will be hampered by your fears and held back from taking the risks necessary to be successful. I see it often and have recognized it in myself in the past as well. Fear of the future. Fear of what others think. Fear of failure. The list goes on and without the courage to take action, fear wins and our lives remain small.
On the other hand, bravery without fear can lead to recklessness. Without stopping to consider the potential pitfalls of particular actions, we are prone to do silly things that may jeopardize relationships, finances and even our health. When you have a healthy balance of fear and bravery, you can have the right mix of caution and sense of adventure.
There’s an old saying that, “Courage isn’t the absence of fear, but the ability to take action in spite of it.” It’s a great reminder that fear is a normal human emotion, just don’t be held back by it.
Bravery is much rarer, but remember that you don’t need to become fearless to be brave, you just need the voice of your courage to be slightly louder and more compelling than the voice of your fears.
Are fear and bravery enemies or best friends in your life? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Pick your day and time at deanstorercoaching.youcanbook.me to chat. I guarantee that you will walk away from our discussion with at least one idea you can start using immediately.
Image courtesy of Ingo Stiller on Unsplash