To have courage does not mean that we will be without fear. Real courage – the kind of courage we need on a day-to-day basis to act with integrity in our business and personal relationships – is our willingness to face our fears directly. And this goes much deeper than something like going against a fear of heights or asking your boss for a raise. Being able to take actions like that, or even more subtle ones, like having the courage not to say a hurtful word when angry, comes from an interior transformation.
In order to understand the nature of real courage – and therefore to be able to act from it in all situations – requires a new kind of self-understanding that begins with the following idea: we wouldn’t need courage if we weren’t struck with some form of fear, and none of us fear any particular moment without an unconscious feeling passing through us that somehow the moment, the situation, is greater than our ability to use it for the expansion of our character.
Genuine courage is a certain wellspring of strength residing within us that’s born of the understanding that there’s no such thing as a moment – any moment – that is greater than our ability to grow from it.