For the longest time, I thought bravery was ignoring the feelings of fear and doubt. I believed that bravery was doing the scary things in life: jumping off cliffs, speaking in front of crowds, asking out a stranger.
Bravery was loud. Bravery was big, with an in-your-face kind of energy.
But if we define bravery as just seeing our fears and pushing against them, it loses its admirability. I think being brave is so much more than just feeling afraid of something and doing it anyway.
To be brave means to be authentic. It means to live a life of choice rather than a life of coincidence. To be brave is to be true to your heart, listening to its voice rather than the crowd.
This kind of bravery is hard. Sometimes, living a life with this kind of bravery in the driver’s seat means looking like a coward from the outside. Because it means choosing for yourself, without justification. Bravery is knowing that your choices don’t need justification to others, so long as they feel right to you.
True bravery is integrity. It is harmonious living; when how you feel and what you know in your heart matches the path you choose in life. Living bravely isn’t jumping off cliffs. It’s jumping into a life you choose for yourself, even when people have something to say about it. Especially when people have something to say about it.
Your bravery may be quiet, reserved, and calculated. My bravery may be loud, big, and fast. However, it doesn’t mean I am more fearless than you, or that my life will be any greater.
Bravery is owning it. Being brave is being loyal to yourself. The opposite of fear is love, and bravery isn’t just ignoring the fear. Bravery is rooted so deeply in self-love and devotion to who we are and what we feel.
Living a brave life is not an easy life. You will be misunderstood. People will not recognise your type of bravery. People will call you selfish. They will not understand your choices or the reasoning behind your actions. But persist regardless.
Listen to yourself. Live a brave and bold life of listening to your heart and pursing the things that set your soul on fire. Don’t hide or try to fit into people’s ideas of the person they think you should be. Bravery is ignoring the “should’s” of the crowd and listening to the “do’s” of your heart song.
Vow to stay true to yourself. That is how you live life bravely and boldly.