Remember, “brave” is a verb. It seems we often forget that. It’s clearly an adjective, a state of being courageous. Or a noun, both as the title of a fantastic movie and–though dated in use–as a person. More importantly, it’s a verb. To brave misfortunes. To face a person or circumstance with courage; to overcome fear(s). Why more importantly? Who cares about what part of speech “brave” is? Anyone who is afraid of something ever, I would imagine. So, everyone. If you think about “brave” as a verb, it compels you to act.
Verb. Action. Do. Doing is more actionable than being. Being implies you’ve already reached something that is permanent; when are you ever permanently anything? Never. So even if for one instance you are brave, will you always be? No. You have to keep building, growing, stretching that brave muscle. Especially if you’ve rarely used it before.
Simple, small actions will build up; like the proverbial ant hill. Psychology today has a robust list of 50 Ways You Can Be Brave Today. Here are some of my favorites on the list:
It’s a good question. I mean, who really needs to be brave besides first responders and military and medical professionals and the like? Veronica Roth said it beautifully:
“There are so many ways to be brave in this world. Sometimes bravery involves laying down your life for something bigger than yourself, or for someone else. Sometimes it involves giving up everything you have ever known, or everyone you have ever loved, for the sake of something greater.
But sometimes it doesn’t.
Sometimes it is nothing more than gritting your teeth through pain, and the work of every day, the slow walk toward a better life.”
Brave, to brave, is the dividend between your fear and your decision to act. Maybe it’s fear of starting a new eating plan or workout regimen. Maybe it’s to start a new career path or pickup a side hustle. Maybe it’s to tell someone you love them first or that it’s over. Maybe it’s as simple as trying a weird looking produce item at the grocery store (I mean there is some crazy looking stuff out there!) or the hole-in-the-wall that could be amazing but could also be, um, well anyway you get the point.