Do you ever wish you had more courage? Do you find yourself admiring those who take bold actions and wish you could do the same? Courage is often misunderstood as the absence of fear, but it’s about moving forward despite it. Courage nurtured is the balm to overcoming fear. In this vlog, I explore the essence of courage, why it’s essential, and how to cultivate it. Through personal anecdotes and practical exercises, I’ll guide you to leverage courage to not only step outside your comfort zone but thrive in it. Join me and discover a way to rewire your brain for more courage in your life.

Do you ever wish that you had more courage? 

Do you watch people do these big, audacious things and wish that you could do that, too? 

Or have something in front of you that is new, a leap of sorts and are just frozen or really resistant to move forward? We talk about this comfort zone –  living outside the comfort zone. Would you like to be able to thrive outside your comfort zone? 

If you answer yes to any of these, then please stick around because today we’re going to talk all about courage. If you haven’t met me, hello, my name is Carri Richard. I am a mindset coach, and I guide people to work with their mind to let go of what gets in the way of all of who you are and the life that you’re truly here to live.

I’ve helped hundreds of women and men clear away what stood in the way of their ultimate success. Transformation comes from small shifts at the root. So let go of the fight, work with what you’ve been given, and step into all that is here for you. 

Today we’re going to talk all about courage, and let’s dive in.

First of all, what is courage? 

We’re going to talk about what it is, why it’s necessary, and most importantly, how to nurture it, how to strengthen the muscle within us by using our minds and how it works. 

A definition of courage is quality of mind that enables one to meet danger without fear. So that is all well and good. Great. This is what it’s defined as, but how the heck do I do that? Courage also comes from the root of meaning the heart. So it was corage, which came from coeur, which is from France, our Latin language. And it really means it’s the seat of emotions. It’s spirit and the frame of mind. So that’s what we’re going to work with today. It’s also this spirit of knowing it may be hard in doing it anyway. Nike’s got a great motto, “just do it”. And That is all well and good, and we can practice that. And sometimes there are stories or subconscious, unconscious things that are going on up here that actually make it very difficult sometimes to take courageous action. So today we’re going to work with the brain.

I’m going to give you an exercise that you can do. I encourage, encourage you to take the time to do this exercise for yourself, and I’m going to walk you through it right now. 

So often, courage is needed when our fear is really high. We can intellectually say, I’m going to go do it, and there’s this fear that’s holding us back. And the fear is usually one of two things. Either we are going to lose something by doing this, or we’re not going to get something by taking this action. So just know this. Just be aware of it. We all have it. So if you feel like you’re unique in having difficulty, summonin gcourage, please know that this is not unusual. This is how our brain works with negativity bias. It’s really trying to keep us safe. However, we do not live in the world today where we have so many threats of losing our lives as we did when our brains were developing. 

Back in, I think, about 2000, I was in high tech. I was in high tech for about 25 years-ish. And in 2000, I was working for a very large company and actually was in a very elite team doing a lot of great things and learning a lot.

And my passion was for helping customers fix big issues. So I got interviewed by another large software company in Silicon Valley with a brand new team, a brand new program, a whole different level of service for these really large customers. And I got flown in to do the interview. It went really well. I got back home and I got a call. And they said, we want you to be part of this team that’s just starting up this new program. I was so excited and meant I would be traveling to these large customers. I would be in the middle of some really big issues and problems and bringing solution to them. And so they called with an offer, and the offer was actually quite a pay cut. And I was young. I was, let’s see, mid 20s, a little bit older. Now you know how old I am. So it was a huge opportunity at quite a pay cut. There was part of my mind as I’m sitting on the phone saying, “take it, take it, take it”. And then there was another part of me that actually was more my heart that was saying, “hold up, hold up for a second”.

And I ran myself through pretty much through this exercise that I’m taking you through today because there’s the ability to reflect on the stories we tell ourselves. And at that point in time, that take it, take it, take it. Just say yes. Just say yes. It’s what you want. Who cares? The story really is that I need to sacrifice something, that I need to sacrifice to move forward. It can also look like I have to work really hard to make things happen. For me, by God’s grace, I could see that this is a story that was running. So the questions I asked myself were in a very swift manner, I’d like to say, were, is it true? Is it true? Is it true that I need to do that? Is it absolutely true? How was I feeling in that moment? How I was feeling in that moment when it was the take it, take it, take it? Really, how I was feeling was that I was losing. I did not feel totally empowered. I actually, to be honest, I felt a little offended at the offer, to be truly honest. Is it absolutely true?

Do I have to sacrifice to get something like this? No. How do I act when I felt that way? When I was living this idea, I had to sacrifice for a promotion or this new opportunity. It felt urgent. It felt tight. It felt fearful. The fear was that I was going to lose this opportunity. And what is the outcome when I act on that story? The outcome is that I’m going to sacrifice something to get something else. So the next thing is, how would I feel without that thought? How would I feel if I didn’t subscribe, believe that I had to sacrifice to move forward? Well, if I feel pretty good. I feel a lot lighter than I did with that story running. How would I act? Well, how I would act is I would say, This is such a great offer. This is such a great more so. This Excuse me, this is such a great opportunity. However, there’s something incongruent here. I could act with integrity, with honesty, with real, just being real, with acknowledging how I was feeling about it, and also appreciating the opportunity in front of me. And what would be the outcome without that thought?

Well, the outcome would be that I would be honest, and leave the ultimate outcome to, for me, it’s for God, to something bigger than me. So as I went through all of this, what I realized is it was more important and it felt better. And I was willing to let go of that story and say, “This is a really, really great opportunity, and I really, really want to be part of the team. And there’s an issue here because it’s at quite a pay cut, and I don’t think I can do that”. So they said, Well, I appreciate your honesty, and we’ll have to get back to you. And I can remember hanging up the phone, and we still had landlines then. And part of me, my heart was racing, and part of me was still like, oh, my gosh, I can’t believe I did that. And there was another large part of me that said, you know what? You said what you needed to say. 

My encouragement to you, oh, by the way, they called back And not only did they meet my expectations, but they exceeded my expectations. And I spent a large part of my career in that team and building those programs out.

And it’s got me here today. So with courage, when we have courage, when we really look at what’s so for us and can stand up with exactly who we are, then this is where growth occurs. And it doesn’t have to be material growth. This is where we truly become who we’re meant to be. And when we’re in that space, then we make the impact we’re here to make. We help the people we’re here to help. We encourage. And you know what? It feels better. It often… When I am true to myself, most of the time that I am angry, if I really look, it’s not the outside circumstances all the time. Often, it’s me holding back some part of myself. So these wonderful things we got on top of our head, these brains, There’s this idea of… It’s not an idea. There is neuroplasticity, which means that we can rewire what’s going on in here. One of the ways to do it and how we speak to our subconscious or speak to parts of our brain is through repetition. So here is my encouragement to you, is to look at the stories that –  Actually begin, look at a situation where you need courage.

I’m sure there is something in your life right now where there is a step you’re ready to take or you could take. However, there are some holdback or fear. Maybe fear that you’re going to lose something. Maybe fear that you’re not going to get something. That you’re not ready, that you still have to. Something like that. So take a look at what the story is about that thing. Like I said, for the example I gave, it was that I had to sacrifice to get this new opportunity. And then the next thing is to run through these questions. Is it true? Then is it absolutely true? Meaning without a shadow of a doubt, there’s nothing you can do about it. Is it absolutely true? Is this a law? Then the next thing, how do I feel in the moment when I’m subscribing to believing in that story? How do I feel? Do I feel light? Do I feel energized? Do I feel heavy? Do I feel constricted? Pay attention to how you feel, what your body is telling you when you’re running that story. Then take a look at how do I act when I’m running that story. 

Am I wide open? Do I speak with ease? Do I tell the whole story? Am I reserved? Am I holding something back. Sometimes I don’t want to say anything at all. And what’s the outcome when I live in that story? Then, Here’s the work. This is the rewiring. How would I feel without that thought? And if you say, I don’t know because I always have that thought, you can ask your brain this, How do I feel without that thought? How would I feel without that thought? Imagine. How would I act without that thought? What would the outcome be without that thought? So answer those questions. Take that time for yourself. This is something that will not only benefit you in the current situation that you have, it will benefit you moving forward, because the next thing I’m going to ask you to do is take a look at at least 10 stories you may have that keep you limited, that say, It’s okay for them. They can do that, but I can’t because… I’ve had many stories. I can’t because I’m a single mom. I can’t because I have to do this.

I can’t because I have to do that. The encouragement is to look at each of those stories and ask these questions. Is it true? Is it absolutely true? How would I feel in the moment running that story? How would I act? What would the outcome be? How would I feel without that thought? How would I act without that thought? And what would the outcome be? Remember, this is an experiment. This is for you. And this is how you nurture courage. So I hope this is helpful. I would love to hear how it works for you. If you have any questions or you need more clarification, let me know.

And until next time,