“Courage is not about being fearless. It’s about facing things despite fear.”
At one point or the other, we have all felt crippled by the fear of doing something. It could be pushing beyond your comfort zone, investing in something, or even starting a business. It could be the fear of what other people will say or of being in front of a large crowd. We often think of fear as the absence of courage, but according to Sir Richard Branson, writer of the foreword of The Courage Map, courage has a different definition. Contrary to what we may think, courage is not being fearless. It’s facing things despite this fear.
If you are looking to step up and make bold decisions in your life, then I would highly encourage this book for you. It’s easy to allow ourselves to be run by fears, both rational and irrational fears. But what you need to realise is that fear is something you should learn to accommodate, without allowing it to overcome you. In The Courage Map, you will learn that the more you look at fear, the less intimidating she becomes. In fact, according to the author, freedom is on the other side of fear.
The Courage Map uses real-life analogies to explain the lessons that can be learnt, and this reinforces the message that is being passed across. The author Franziska Iseli tells his stories candidly and boldly, and I think it’s a great tool that he has incorporated in this self-help book.
Among the 13 principles to living boldly is stories. What stories do you tell yourself about things that happen to you? In one example, he speaks about the fact that his father never even once told him that he loved him. He could choose to tell himself that his father didn’t, in fact, love him or he could go with the narrative that his father does not express his love using words. Which one is more beneficial? As the author says, “A repetitive thought or story can turn into a belief. Your stories create your beliefs, habits, and results. You are the creator of your own stories.”
One of the things I was most excited to find being addressed in The Courage Map is entitlement. We sometimes feel entitled to people, in terms of their time or even their help. Where should we draw the line? The book says that entitlement will never bring you closer to your truth. In fact, it may be a reaction to a fear of not being good enough or a fear of not being seen.
Another principle discussed is intentions. At the beginning of the year, I realised that I lack the quality of being intentional, and reading about it in this book was quite thought-provoking. As the author of The Courage Map says, ‘When you don’t know where to put your energy, you may feel scattered, confused, or incongruent with yourself. Intentions help you to funnel your energies. They set the tone and influence your thoughts, actions, and results.’
This book is a breath of fresh air and the hard truth that we all need to hear from time to time. It will help you understand your principles and values, and adjust your life to realign with these values. You will get a deeper understanding of who you are, and fundamentally, this is the most important thing in life. Knowing yourself is the foundation of all other interactions that you have in life and could be the stepping stone to your success.