courageous-two-waysLately I’ve been thinking about what it means to live with courage.

I feel like we need to keep mustering up courage anew each and every day.

It seems like when we don’t, we kind of fall into a default mode of living that lacks passion and zest.

I guess that’s how I view living with courage everyday. It’s having a zest for life.

But how do we know if we are living courageously?

How do we know we are creating a life of passion and zest?

“The opposite of courage in our society is not cowardice. It’s conformity.”

Rollo May

I read this quote by Rollo May the other day and I really wanted to reflect on what it really means.

How is conformity the opposite of courage?

What kind of conformity is Rollo May talking about?

Since courage looks different to everyone, it’s hard to know if we are actually doing it.

After reflecting on this quote, I’ve come up with two major things that I feel show we are living with courage in the world today.


I think this might be part of what Rollo May is talking about when he says the opposite of courage is conformity.  

This is because conformity is our default for making life decisions.

It’s much easier to follow the majority than it is to really think about what our own passions are.

It’s easier to blindly accept what others say is the good way to live than it is to analyze and reflect on what will make us happy.

Thinking is hard. Looking inward is hard. That’s why too few of us do it.

The result is making life decisions that don’t reflect our true desires.

We need to strip away all the things we have been told are the “right” decisions and really reflect on where our hearts are leading us.

After this reflection, we may come full circle to the same decision.

That’s okay.

The point is to make decisions with intention and thoughtfulness.

This takes courage because it means we are more responsible for how our lives turn out.

When we let others or society decide for us, we can have someone to blame.

Courage means making decisions on your own, the opposite of conformity.


Another message I got from the quote is that being courageous means we must be active rather than passive about our happiness.

The reason it’s risky to leave our life decisions up to the world is because, while it’s easy,

it really means we are being passive about our happiness.

It means we won’t do as much as we can to make ourselves happy.

Why should we? As long as we follow all the rules, happiness should just come to us, right?

Living courageously in today’s world means actively seeking out the people, situations, and goals that will make you happy.

Too many of us are passive about our own happiness.

We feel we are owed happiness from the world because we have followed the rules we were supposed to and did a good job of it too!

Unfortunately, happiness is not an automatic product of being a good citizen, or even a good samaritan.

In order to live courageously today, we need to actively seek out the things that make us happy.

It takes courage to do this because it’s harder.

When we are feeling unhappy, it’s easier to pass the responsibility of our happiness to something outside of ourselves.

But if we keep doing this, we don’t learn to practice self care, self respect, or self love.

Living courageously means actively seeking things that make us happy every, single, day.

Well those are my thoughts for the day.

What are your thoughts about this? True? Not true?

Let me know what you think! What are some other ways we can live courageously?