Lost & Found Courage
5 tips on how to overcome the gap your courageous thoughts and courageous actions
The other day one of my coaching clients said: “Courage is in my mind, but not in my actions.” I loved the way she expressed herself and would like to share some of my thoughts on this with you today.
How often do you experience this kind of gap? The gap between what you wish to do, i.e. your courageous visions and goals and reality i.e your courageous actions? A reality where your courageous thoughts keep being added to the “To Do list”. A list that you hope may one day see the light. By holding back on tackling this list, your courageous thoughts start to fade until one day they disappear completely and get forgotten. They belong to your past even before they had a chance to become courageous actions that belong to your future.
Can you imagine this endless sea of faded courageous thoughts, some of which may be brilliant thoughts. Some of which could have possibly made a big difference to your personal and professional life? Thoughts which could have brought more purpose, meaning, fulfilment, satisfaction, joy and happiness into your world.
What a shame. What a waste. Yes, indeed, but this does not have to be the case. We can all become the master of our own courage and work towards closing the gap between our “courageous thoughts” and “courageous actions”.
Here are five tips on how to do so:
1 - Bring your courageous thoughts to the foreground
A lot of people just carry bold visions and goals somewhere in the back of their minds. This way these visions and goals never have enough focus and room to make it to reality. One way to help is to use the technique of “Visualisation”. Create space, be it in your note book or on your vision wall and evolve the biggest possible version of your ideas, thoughts and visions. Use colours and forms. Be creative! This does not have to happen all at once. It should be an ongoing process, developing and evolving with focus and passion. In addition try to understand the motivation and the “Why” behind each of your courageous thoughts. The reason you want to do something is the strongest basis, the birth place and the key to transforming your courageous thoughts into courageous actions and making things happen.
2 - Start talking about your courageous thoughts
When you start talking about them and sharing your ideas with like minded and trusted people, you kind of start to live those thoughts. You get more ideas, you get inspired by others and can expand your knowledge about the topic. You can find support and become part of e.g. relevant trusted networks, which could help you to realise your courageous actions. By talking to others about your ideas, they start taking form and colours. They start to take shape and evolve into even more bolder visions and goals. In addition you start to understand how strongly you really feel connected to these thoughts and can decide accordingly whether or not you wish to develop them further.
3- Dig deep into that gap
If we do not know what is holding us back from triggering those actions, we will never be able to make them happen. Give yourself the permission to find out what is creating this gap. What is limiting you and holding you back from setting those actions in motion? Some of the most common blockers are our reluctance to leave our comfort zone, our fears, our wish to avoid taking risks, our experiences to date and our beliefs and assumptions.
Digging deep means delving into the reasons behind the avoidance to transform your thoughts into actions. It means recognising and identifying them. What is giving them permission to exist? Why are they there? This way you create transparency and understand whether those reasons are really valid. Most of the time we over estimate our fears and the risks involved. As the American writer Mark Twain said so beautifully: “I’ve seen many catastrophes in my life. Most of them have never happened.“
4- Make a start. Don’t wait for things to be perfect
A lot of people, especially ladies, tend to wait until things are perfect before they start to act. “I will do it when I have learned enough”. “I will do it when everything is perfect”, “ I would rather wait for a more perfect time”. I can tell you that there is no such thing as the perfect time. You do not have to know everything before you start. Courageous actions and the process of moving forward often happen thanks to “learning by doing”. One courageous step at a time. The important thing is to make a start, even if it is just a tiny step.
5- Continuously build and develop your courage and confidence muscles
In order to turn those courageous thoughts into actions, you need to get into the habit of courage and confidence building. Achieve this by creating your courage action plan. Each courageous action gives you the confidence to move on to the next one. This way you consistently strengthen your confidence and courage muscles. "My weekly courage book" on my inspirational platform takethecourage.com can help you to build your courage action
Embrace courage and confidence! Make them yours and use them to close the gap between your courageous thoughts and actions. Achieve what you want to achieve in your work and career!
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