COURAGE. Its a big old word. It suggests other words like bravery and heroism. There are many symptoms for the word Courage but in my experience there is no substitute. It's the mother of it all and not one of us misses the opportunity to live it.
For most people, there is no award ceremony to honor the courage shown in their daily lives. Each of us has carried silent secret obstacles we have had to overcome to get to where we want to be. The challenges are as many in number as there are individuals meeting them. They are different because we are made of different stuff and in varied stages of development and experience. But there are two creatures we share in common that throw us over the edge and bring us face-to-face with our monsters: PAIN and FEAR. They feel huge sometimes and they only get bigger when we avoid them. Oh we are the masters of diversion and excuse and worst of all, blame. We are incredibly imaginative and the creativity spent on running away is great (and sometimes admirable in its own right). But it doesn't take us where we want to be. We share that place in common, too, and that is: to be through the FEAR and PAIN of the worry, angst and drama that permeates our lives.
Immediate danger brings forward one brand of Courage. We are forced in a single moment to choose and we do it. When it is life or death, the choice is made and it's over. There is relief in one way or the other.
When the situation is a slow one, or passive, or seems so insurmountable that it wears us down, there is temptation and even a kind of reasoning that begs us to give up. (Be advised that giving up can also be a very courageous choice when it isn't a way of avoiding the inevitable. That is very personal and only the person making the choice knows best!) This is when Courage is not only most powerful but also vital to our success. It is the most courageous kind of courage there is. It is directly related to our self-respect and like everything, the more we practice it, the easier it is to dive in. When we choose this type of Courage, it carries us through to the other side of the "monster" and once we arrive, we feel the relief, yes, but we also feel our own strength and we gain understanding of its brother, Confidence, and it's sister, Peace.