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  • Writer's picturePaloma Gaskin

A Quiet Kind of Courage

Updated: Apr 28, 2021

Courage comes in many forms, and more often than not, it’s taking one step after the next with a quiet determination. It doesn’t tend to be one act of bravery that is required, but the cumulative effect of many little discomforts we have to overcome in a constant way. It’s a greater challenge, to be consistent over a certain timeframe, than in one short burst of bravado. It’s uncomfortable to say the least, to find ourselves at the pressure point, where courage is demanded like a blood sacrifice. Maybe the situation is distressing, overwhelming or seemingly insurmountable. But what’s the alternative? A resignation of defeat, to stagnate in our comfort zone? Even if that comfort zone, is one of suffering and akin to a living death?

“Man cannot discover new oceans, unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore” - Andre Gide. This quote exemplifies the letting go process, necessary to explore our highest potential and aim for our deepest dreams. To hang onto safety is actually the real risk.

The fear of the unknown never ceases to distract from the present moment. It’s just our imagination, needlessly playing the “what ifs” of Russian roulette in our minds. A worst-case scenario of possible futures, grave-robbing from past bad experiences. Yikes! There is no chance of growth without courage, and without courage we effectively start to wither, before we’ve had a chance to bloom. The present is the one time in which we hold power. Yet we squander it to the ghosts of our past, from which we simulate ghosts of the future.

Courage can be an antidote to fear. The kind of courage that is heart-warming and phenomenal, because we honour ourselves, instead of betraying who we are for a quiet existence. We can go through the motions, on semi-automatic, while wishing for something, somewhere or someone else. Or we can be brave from the pit of our stomachs, and build momentum around the goals we want to accomplish. One step after the next, and another.

Let’s celebrate the little victories! I hope to meet you on new oceans, adrift on my little boat, my face to the sun. Or in the storm, searching for the lighthouse, on an unknown shore...

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