Courage is found in the doing. I wholeheartedly agree. I have also discovered that gratitude is a useful means for cultivating courage.
Specifically, there are three ways I have personally found gratitude to be a powerful precursor to more courage.
Forgiving the past
Several years ago, while doing one of my first releasing rituals I had a sudden prompting to give thanks for the regrets of my past. It felt like an odd thing to do but I followed the prompting and expressed gratitude for the things in my past I wish I had done differently.
Leaving my former job three years ago was one of my biggest acts of courage. Yet looking back, I know there were at least two other times in the years prior when I felt the nudge from Spirit that I needed to make that change.
But I was too scared to do it plus I had no idea what I would do next. I let that fear paralyze me from taking any action and I stayed much longer than I perhaps should have stayed.
I have regrets about not leaving sooner. Things that happened I wish never did and opportunities missed because I let fear win. But by giving thanks for them I found that I could let go of those regrets.
Regret can rob you of your courage. But forgiving the past through gratitude allows you to access a level of courage you don’t yet realize you have in you. Forgiving the past is the first way gratitude paves a way to more courage.
Accepting what is
This may be hard to wrap your head around but I found that giving thanks for what is, even when you want things to change, helps to grow your courage. Gratitude helps you see the positive in your current situation rather than focusing on the things that aren’t going the way you want them to go.
I started a daily gratitude list in 2015. Things in my business were not going the way I wanted and I was getting discouraged. My gratitude practice helped me find the good in the midst of everything that was going wrong.
In the last three years, I have missed only 2 days of writing. My daily list has been an anchor for me through the ups and downs that is the life of an entrepreneur.
Acceptance of things as they are IS what will give you the courage to change your circumstances. Resisting reality only serves to increase your suffering. But if you can accept what is you can more clearly see what courageous action is needed to move you forward.
Opening to Possibility
As you forgive the past and accept what is true for today, the future opens up with unimaginable possibility.
The day I did my releasing ritual, giving thanks for my past mistakes and letting go of my regrets, I had an idea that shifted the direction of my business. This didn’t lead me down an easy path. In fact, I would say it’s been a path filled with brambles and bushes that I’ve had to whack at as I went along. But I’ve always been something of a trailblazer and in many ways, this made sense to me.
Every day the path becomes clearer. I also see that I am clearing a path for those who will come behind me. Those who need to find their courage, who need to know they are meant for more, those who need to know that they can do hard things and come out the other side better for the changes made.
It has taken courage to forge this path (and a whole lot of tenacity) but gratitude has been its foundation since the very beginning.
Now I’m inviting you to access YOUR courage on the pathway of Gratitude. Starting November 1st I’m hosting my annual Gratitude Challenge.
It’s 21 days of focusing on gratitude and cultivating courage instead of fanning the flames of fear; it’s 21 days of paving the path to a new way of being. Who might you become when you walk the gratitude way? Come join me and find out! We start November 1st and go all month long.
Here’s to rising into your greatness.
From my heart to yours,
P.S: If you’re feeling stuck but ready to figure out to getting moving again let’s talk. Schedule a complimentary Courage Igniter Call with me. This is a conversation where we can take an honest look at what you really want for yourself and what has been standing in the way of you accessing your courage. This is a no obligation call; simply a way for you to be heard as you speak up for what you know you deserve in your life. Click here to schedule your ‘Courage Igniter’ Call.