May 26, 2017

How to Find Your Courage and Avoid Complacency

Courage and complacency are meaningful words but they are quite opposites of each other, and it’s key to distinguish the difference because we want to encourage one (courage) over the other (complacency), obviously. When I think of courage, I think of being brave and strong (even if I don’t feel strong). Courage is strength and powerful. It’s also uncomfortable.

On the other hand when I think of complacency, I think of the opposite of courageous. I think of no movement or progression towards bigger things. I think little emotion or interest, lazy and no extra effort.  The Cambridge Dictionary defines complacency as “a feeling of calm satisfaction with your own abilities or situation that prevents you from trying harder.”

Without big dreams we risk not fulfilling and using our God given gifts to serve others and the world around us.

 

Truth: If there is anything consistent in life it is CHANGE. Change is everywhere even though choosing change is uncomfortable, risky, and scary and it takes a whole lotta courage. Do you ever find that some people seem to make change seem so easy? While, it’s true, some people have an easier time adapting to change it’s because over time they have crafted a rationale that eliminates fear. Because it’s fear that typically freezes us from making any change. It’s breeds complacency.

It’s fear that typically freezes us from making any change. It’s breeds complacency.

 

How to Find Your Courage and Avoid Complacency

 

 

Memory Recall

It’s time to recall all the courageous things you’ve done in the past. You know all those courageous things you did and yet you STILL SURVIVED? Yes, you survived. Lord have mercy. It’s an empowerment move of the mind, to recall the positive actions you’ve done in the past. It’s a confidence boost. This is what I do when I’m feeling fearful or I’m not feeling confident. I use that reflection as a boost of confidence and then try to pull the trigger to commit before my mind has time (which is usually a 5 second window) to back out in fear.

It takes courage to be in the game, not sitting on the bench (err, waiting for the courage to jump in the game). While waiting can be ok, eventually it’s time to get in the game. When you’re on the bench, you don’t have a voice because you’re still waiting. Speak up and ACT to be in the game & thrive.

What are those courageous things you have done?

  • Taking a new, different job or leaving one
  • Living in an unfamiliar city
  • Going on a date or attempting the “dating scene”
  • Committing to a relationship or ending one
  • Saying how you truly feel to someone
  • Or maybe some days, it’s just getting out of bed

Every day there are little courageous acts that serve as opportunities to serve others and to grow.

Sometimes you’ve just got to pull the trigger. It’s like taking off a bandaid- it hurts (insert: scary, uncomfortable, unknown) but when it’s over, you reflect and say “well that wasn’t so bad.” Or, “at least I tried.” Or maybe, “how can I try that differently?” And sometimes, you may even say why did I not do this sooner?

 

Pray

 

I believe in the power of prayer. It’s a daily part of my life, so much so that it’s sometimes an endless conversation throughout the day.  

Maybe there’s something that you’ve been wanting to do, try, say, etc., and you just haven’t pulled the trigger. You know, “that thing?” Maybe you’ve been feeling little nudges to pursue this or that. If nothing comes to mind, then maybe consider spending some time praying and dreaming with big dreams- seemingly unreachable dreams. Without big dreams we risk not fulfilling and using our God given gifts to serve others and the world around us.

“It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.” Deuteronomy 31:8 ESV

 

Only you have the specific skill set, personality and background/experiences to put those God given gifts into practice. Think of it this way: Without putting these gifts into practice, you’re depriving others of your beautiful abilities.

 

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 ESV

 

 

If you need to, take baby steps

If little steps are available and possible, take them! It makes the “big leap” not as scary.

Recently I reached out to a new friend to ask about partnering on a project together because we have similar interests towards health. I thought I would ask because, well, what do I have to lose? She could say no, but that’s about it. Well I asked her and she jumped on the opportunity! She said she had been toying with a similar idea but had not pulled the trigger. Who know? Win win. You just never know. 

The other point to keep in mind is that sometimes it doesn’t matter if it’s a big step or a little, baby step- steps are uncomfortable. And if I were to quote one of my favorite authors and researchers, Brene Brown, she says:

“Vulnerability sounds like truth and looks like courage.” -Brene Brown

Courage and comfort are not synonymous.

It is action > words

It’s brave actions > still sitting on the bench

It’s the hard road > easy

 

And whether it’s big steps or little steps, it’s steps nonetheless. Take the step.

Choose courage over complacency (and comfort).

 

Have a great Friday!

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