You may be saying “Ah! I have heard that before”. It is, indeed, one of the many famous quotes we hear as we grow up, but have we ever taken time to reflect on this quote, especially when we quote it in reference to ourselves or when someone quotes it in relation to us?
I recently used this quote on myself and then took time to reflect on why I was using it. Sometimes you understand what something is by looking at what it is not. The opposite of coward is brave; therefore when I fail to be brave, I end up being a coward!
To be honest, there have been times in my life when I failed to be brave; several where I let fear rule over action. There were even more where I let opportunities slip by because of my fear to take a risk. Truly there have been many times when I let my heart sink instead of fight, giving up only to regret it later.
Being a coward is to let fear control our hearts and minds when we are faced with a challenge greater than we are used to facing. To be brave does not mean that we do not have fears, it means mastering fear in that moment. Over the course of my life I have come to learn that we can actually use fear to spur ourselves into action.
What I love about this quote is the set of words: “…many times before…” it tells us that there will come many occasions in our lives where we can decide to be cowards or we can decide to be brave. We will have many opportunities to right the wrong and to make up for last time. The question is – when the next time does arrive, will we chicken out? Will we run off with our tails between our legs? Will we end up being told one more time that “cowards die many times before their death”?
The truth is we can all change. We should not be ashamed of our past deeds of cowardice, but rather we should let those failures move us to say “Never again!” We all can be “The Brave One”.
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