By Fola Ladipo

This is the ability to do something that frightens one. Strength in the face of pain or grief. It is not the absence of fear but rather the ability to overcome fear when we need something bad enough.

The most courageous of people still have their moments of fears.

This Video gives an explicit insight into all you need to know about having courage which helps surmount life’s challenges

Also read: COVID-19: Constant stress, fear can reduce body immunity, says Nutritionist

Kinds of Courage

  • Physical Courage: This is the courage people think of first, developing physical strength, resilience and awareness. Facing an enemy on the battlefield, facing fierce challenging situations.  It is worthy of note to mention here, it is normal to feel or be wary of pains, pain tells us our boundaries or limits. Courage helps in the face of pain.
  • Social Courage: This involves the risk of social embarrassment or exclusion, unpopularity or rejection. It involves leadership. Standing out, non conforming to the expectations of others. Showing off true self at the risk of social disapproval, being able to express opinions and preferences without checking to see if they are in line with everyone’s opinion.
  • It is never about attracting or craving attention, it is about asking what you want or need and offering what you see others want or need.

For parents, it is not comparing your children with others, it is understanding peer pressure and standing firm against it in its destructive form.

  • Intellectual Courage: …“Nothing in life to be feared. It is only to be understood”  Marie Curie

A Japanese proverb says “if you believe everything you better not read”

These are being able or willing to grapple with difficult or confusing concepts and ask questions,  it is being willed to struggle to gain understanding and risk making mistakes. Sometimes what we learn challenges previously accepted ideas or contradict teachings and values or believe the system of family or cultural groups

  • Moral Courage: This involves doing the right thing, so much more when the risks involve shame, opposition, or disapproval of others. This is more about ethics and integrity, a resolution to match word and action with values and ideals. This is not about what we say we are but what we reveal by our words, actions and values.
  • Emotional Courage: This opens us up to the full spectrum of positive emotions
  • Spiritual Courage: Fortifies us when we struggle with questions about faith, purpose and meanings, either religious or non-religious framework.

Importance:

Courage is needed in the face of threat, to be able to stand and push back challenges, deal with life-threatening situations such as sickness, death, examination etc.

Real courage requires wisdom!  Nonetheless, lowering your standards to go with the crowd should never pass for courage.

How to show Courage:

  • Learn to say NO, stop putting someone else’s needs ahead of your own.
  • Ask for what you want and stand by it
  • Confess your love to someone, forgive, get angry at someone
  • Let go
  • Defy the status quo

Leadership and Courage:

Good leaders need the courage to make bold and unpopular decisions. Leadership takes courage, there is the trust courage, the courage of confidence in others, letting go of the need to control situation s or outcomes.

Bible Characters that acted in Courage:

Nehemiah

He identified a problem to be solved.

More than 100 years after Jerusalem fell to the Babylonians; the walls of the city lay in ruins, leaving it vulnerable to attacks. To Nehemiah, this was intolerable. He appealed to the king Artaxerxes of Persia and won his backing to return to the land of his ancestors to rebuild the walls. In 150 days, Nehemiah was able to accomplish his mission even in the face of strong opposition and discouragement.

David :

When we read the story of David killing Goliath, though he was courageous, the bible says that after Samuel anointed him with oil, “….the Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon David” which establishes that there is an inner strength that propels us to do the extraordinary, it enables us to act courageously.

Harriet Tubman:

She did the unimaginable at a critical time. She helped hundreds of black slaves fleeing captivity in North America and Canada.

She was driven by hardship, wasted youth and even punishments, this prompted her at the 28 to make an escape and then embark on a rescue mission, in 10 years, in spite of the price of 40,000dollars placed on her head, she helped 300 black slaves escaped using a complicated system, underground railroad.

Dr Ameyo Stella Adadevoh:

She was a Nigerian Physician who is credited with having curbed the widespread of  deadly Ebola virus in Nigeria in 2014. Her bold and courageous move, by placing the patient, Patrick Sawyer in quarantine despite the pressure from the Liberian government, she created an isolation area with a wooden barricade and without protective equipment. Dr Adadevoh was diagnosed with Ebola virus disease and later died on the 19th of August 2014.

MKO Abiola

He won the June 12 election in 1993 but was annulled. He stood up against the military juntas and challenged the annulment of the victory he was denied.

Ken Saro-Wiwa

Fought for what he believed and died for the same course.

He was a writer, television producer and environmental activist. He won the award for exemplary courage as a member of the Ogoni people. The Ogoni land was targeted for crude oil extraction since 1950 but has suffered extreme environmental damage from years of indiscriminate petroleum waste dumping

Saro Wiwa led the MOSOP in series of the non-violent campaign against the military government to challenge the environmental state of the Ogoni land.

He was tried and killed by hanging in 1995.

Being courageous in daily life:

  • Engaging in a new experience
  • Asking someone out on a date
  • Doing something risky, like sky diving, even riding a bike
  • Standing up for someone
  • Stepping out of or living abusive relationship
  • Standing up against racism or prejudice
  • Facing the public to make a presentation on what you believe
  • Investing in a new business venture

Share your courageous moments, do a short video or even a voice note, you can write stating some details of your experience.

Let’s encourage someone out there, tell them it is possible!

Vanguard News

Disclaimer

Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.