It is Okay Not to be Big Brave

I like reading positive affirmations, articles and motivating stories; I always seem to gleam a little bit of insight from all of them. 


One thing I notice is that there is a continual encouragement to be brave.  Try new things, get out of your box, be bold!


I’m all for it…to a point.


I like adventure and trying new things.  It is fun, exciting and you just never know what might come of it.  But I will admit there is a part of me that sticks its little feet firmly in the ground and says, “No way, I am drawing a line here.”


Like rollercoasters.  I don’t do them.  I have a few times and that was only to appease my son.  Who, I might add, took great pleasure in my sheer terror but was impressed with just how loud mom could scream.


I am brave to a point. The ocean is a great example. 


I was reminded of the ocean today when I got a notification from a blogger who is all about surfing. 


I love the ocean.  It is beautiful, powerful, calming and full of life.


It is that full of life thing that causes the inner me to draw the line.


I’ve seen Shark Week and way too many people with jellyfish stings.  There is a whole life in there, a whole other universe and I am not going to intrude.  I mean, how would I like it if some big old fish came up and stomped around in my flowers or garden?  I wouldn’t.  If I had stingers, I would probably sting him too for intruding in my world uninvited and being destructive.


But I do love the water.  I would love to live near it to be able to see, feel and hear it.  And when I say feel, I mean ocean breezes and water just below the ankle. 


I am never going to be as brave as surfer boy out there playing tag with sharks.  I can stand on the safe sand and watch surfer boy, but there is no way I’m going out there.  I’m not that brave.


I am ok with my level of brave.  It is not a big brave. 


I have talked to people that feel like they are stuck and need a change.  They keep hearing that they need to be brave and try something completely new, but they just do not want to and for that they almost feel shamed.


If you think being brave is something that puts you completely out of your comfort zone and on into panic mode, then that is too much brave.


I always think it is better to know what you do not want to do rather than knowing exactly what you do.  It allows you more flexibility in going after opportunities. 


If what you do not want causes your inner self to draw that line, then honor it.  Do not let anyone shame you for not being brave.  I also have heard many a tale of people “being brave” that ended up in hospitals or morgues.  Again, I believe there is a thing as too much brave.


If you are unhappy at your current place of employment there is nothing that says you have to take a leap off a tall mountain and try something completely new. 


If you enjoy your industry or your job, but perhaps it is just the environment that has soured you, then look for something within those areas.  Maybe a little brave might be looking for a similar job but one with a bit more responsibility.  Or doing the same job in a completely different industry. 


I encourage a little brave.  Talk to new people, try new things and find joy in the experiences. 


What I do not encourage is feeling shamed or pressured into being big brave. 


I heard Bob Proctor say once that most people go to work to earn money and that is the worst way to live, you should go to work to find satisfaction.


Be comfortable with your level of brave, find satisfaction in it.  Stop comparing your brave to anyone else’s brave.  What you do not realize is that some people may see you do what you think is a little brave and think it is a big brave.


Some brave steps in job searching may include looking at open positions, connecting to people on LinkedIn, getting your resume updated, networking or asking people you trust about opportunities.


These are all important steps; however, they should be done when you are ready.  If you can try just one that isn’t completely out of your comfort zone then it will give you the confidence to be brave again. 


One last thing, when you do something brave – no matter how big or small – be sure to congratulate yourself.  Even if you feel like you failed miserably, recognize that you tried and that was brave. 


Lisa K McDonald, CPRW

Brand Strategist & Career Coach

Certified Professional Resume Writer


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