You may be forgiven for thinking that courage is simply about being physically or morally brave, speaking or standing up for people or placing yourself in danger for the benefit of others.
Whilst these are important, for us to truly achieve personal freedom and show the world the best of who we are, we must go deeper into what I call 'Authentic Courage'.
My experience tells me that most people will never operate in the realms of authentic courage.
Let me explain the layers.
This is arguably the easiest to understand and the easiest level to act on.
We see acts of physical courage when firefighters risk their lives to save the lives of others or soldiers run into danger far from home to keep us safe, and in many other situations.
Having been in these situations and lived in this environment I can tell you that in the moment, it comes easy.
After acts of phenomenal bravery, the person carrying out this physical courage will say 'I didn't think about it' or 'my training just kicked in' and it's true.
This is not to take away from this level of courage, it's admirable and inspiring and brave, however, in comparison to authentic courage, it's more easily done if the environment and training is there.
The next layer of courage, which is more difficult than physical courage is moral courage.
Moral courage is evident each time we see a person speak up and defend another person, or even more difficult, speak up about what is the right thing to do when a group is erring on the side of shortcuts.
It's easy to see in health and safety, where many people will choose to walk on by situations where a person is not following 'the rules' for fear of confrontation.
For example, imagine you're in a group of friends who get in a mini bus to travel to a social event. As you put your seat belt on, you notice the main group have not and are are engaged in banter and jokes.
Do you say 'hey everyone, will you please put your seatbelts on?'
It's curious that physical courage should be so common in the world and moral courage so rare
Think of an office meeting, you're a junior member of the team and the boss, Peter, is particularly grumpy today and speaking to the more senior people in the meeting in what you consider to be an unprofessional way that is at odds with the values of the organization.
Do you say 'Excuse me Peter, I'd prefer you didn't speak to people like that, it makes me feel angry as it's against the values of the company and it's not right, so can you be more polite and considerate please?'
These are some day to day, very basic examples of where morale courage would require you to speak up. There are clearly much more difficult moral situations than this.
My experience is that most won't.
If you master physical and morale courage, which takes continuous work and is a constant challenge to maintain exceptionally high standards, then you get to play in the magic of authentic courage.
Authentic courage is where you remove all of the restrictions you've placed on yourself due to the expectations of others and truly express yourself in all of your excitement, enthusiasm and energy.
Where you are no longer making decisions of how to 'be' based on what other people will think of you.
This feels both challenging and deeply liberating.
This is day 3 of one of my coaching groups and how I introduce the topic of energy.
I have only recently met these people, and they have only recently met me.
I care more about role modeling authentic courage and truly demonstrating this particular routine of generating energy for them than I do about what they think about me doing it.
When we remove the societal restrictions that we place on ourselves of how 'I' can 'be', then we can truly experience personal freedom and can have our best effect in the world.
Courage often feels scary before the event, flowing and freeing during the event, and if you practice it, you get to experience great pride and personal satisfaction after the event.
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, 'Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?' Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others
He specializes in high performance coaching and has worked with multi million pound business owners, professional athletes and over 300 leaders from the British Army in 2020 alone.
His clients increase productivity on average by 20%, that’s the same as achieving your full working week in 4 days instead of 5. Now imagine achieving that, whilst also regaining personal and professional life balance.
He is currently launching the 'Purposeful Life Planner' in the UK to help you live your life on purpose, pre order your copy for Christmas 2020 at the link.
He also has a thriving monthly coaching membership, find out more and join 'Optimise Monthly Coaching'
Lee sees a vision for the future, where people are much more aware of themselves, proud of themselves instead of scared to be themselves, and living and loving their lives fully, on purpose.
Thank you for reading.