What to do when you don’t feel brave enough

Life if full of opportunities to step up. 

To say “yes.” Or maybe it’s “no,” that takes more courage.

It takes courage to be authentic.

To speak our truth.

To open a business, write a blog, or ask for a raise.

I remember when I went to work after being a stay-at-home mother for 10 years. That was terrifying! I had very little confidence. I felt like an imposter every day.

How can we prepare for such things?

Sometimes we can anticipate that we’re going to get an invitation to be brave. Other times, it’s unexpected.  

I suggest you practice. What do I mean? Practice being brave?

Yes. So often we try to avoid anything that feels risky. We avoid doing something we may fail at.

Big mistake! Bravery can be practiced. It’s a skill you can build by doing it. By doing it often.

Start small. Ask for a free coffee at your favorite coffee shop. Will they tell you no? Probably. There. You just survived a rejection, a disappointment. You might have been embarrassed or felt foolish. Other people in line heard you make a ridiculous request. Let the embarrassment roll by. Smile. Hold your head high. Say “thank you” to the barista. You’re in your own training regime. That’s all that matters.

When you leave you’ll feel the feeling of being brave enough to do it. And what if… What if the barista says “sure.” You’ll be giving yourself high-fives for being so brave!

If this seems ridiculous. I’ll give you the method to my madness. You see, it doesn’t really matter whether the barista says yes, or no. For you, it’s about the practice of asking for something that you wouldn’t normally ask for. That’s part of what being brave is. Doing something you wouldn’t normally do. It doesn’t have to be jumping out of a plane.

Here’s the other reason it will strengthen your bravery muscle: you’re not attached to the outcome. I mean, really, it doesn’t matter if they say yes or no. The point is being brave enough to ask. Being detached from the outcome is a freedom all it’s own.

The real magic?

When we practice being brave in situations that don’t matter, that aren’t important, we are much more likely to be brave when it is important! How can I expect myself to be brave in speaking my truth to my lover, spouse or boss, when I can’t be brave with a barista about something that isn’t even that important? With a little practice you will be able to tap into that practiced bravery when it matters.