Courage – what a great word! It feels inspiring and it sounds powerful. There are times when I have displayed courage, there are also times where I wish I had shown more courage, and there are times when – putting it bluntly – I wish I hadn’t been such a coward.
Many of our my manifesto mates have expressed the courage required to work through the exercises and questions posed in our 7-Step process of creating a unique, personal manifesto. We certainly hear and understand this requirement. It is an act of bravery to reflect on what living authentically means to you. You can imagine the courage that is required to explore ‘What do you stand for?’, and this is simply Step 2: The Courageous Step of our process. There is another level of courage required to put down in words your current, over-arching manifesto – that’s brave.
From our experience, courage is certainly not a finite resource, and actually we have personally experienced and observed that when taking small steps of courage, one can find their levels of courage rising. When an individual is equipped – or armed – with a personal manifesto, it can certainly result in increased levels of individual confidence and courage.
When an individual has clarity for what is important, then the level of courage required will rise to allow the person to live into this newfound clarity. Personally, I have a line in my current manifesto that states: ‘I strive to cultivate courage, expressing myself clearly and bravely standing up for others.’ Through expressing this aim, and then through reading and re-reading these words, I have found new levels of courage in recent years. I am grateful to have voiced my opinion clearly (having first sought to understand other opinions) and I more regularly and more easily stand up for others.
It takes courage to put yourself out there. It takes courage to love, to hope, to believe. It takes courage to have difficult conversations and to make difficult decisions. And yet it is certainly possible. If yeast is the key activating ingredient that helps bread dough to rise, we suggest that a personal manifesto is the key activating ingredient to help your courage to rise. Learn what is important to you, express it with clarity, and then courageously live into your authentic life.