The Six Attributes of Courage; Melanie Greenberg Ph.D. The Mindful Self-Express (2012)..

Courage is something that everybody wants — an attribute of good character that makes us worthy of respect. From the Bible to fairy tales; ancient myths to Hollywood movies, our culture is rich with exemplary tales of bravery and self-sacrifice for the greater good. From the cowardly lion in The Wizard of Oz who finds the courage to face the witch to David battling Goliath in the Bible, to Star Wars and Harry Potter, children are raised on a diet of heroic and inspirational tales.

Yet courage is not just physical bravery. History books tell colorful tales of social activists, such as Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela, who chose to speak out against injustice at great personal risk. Entrepreneurs such as Steve Jobs and Walt Disney, who took financial risks to follow their dreams and innovate are like modern-day knights, exemplifying the rewards and public accolades that courage can bring. There are different types of courage, ranging from physical strength and endurance to mental stamina and innovation. The below quotes demonstrate six different ways in which we define courage. Which are most relevant to you?

In the last section, I present an exercise to help you define and harness your own courage.

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1)  Feeling Fear Yet Choosing to Act

“Bran thought about it. ‘Can a man still be brave if he’s afraid?’ ‘That is the only time a man can be brave,’ his father told him.” ― George R.R. Martin, A Game of Thrones

Fear and courage are brothers. — Proverb

I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear — Nelson Mandela

There is no living thing that is not afraid when it faces danger. The true courage is in facing danger when you are afraid. — L.Frank Baum, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

Being terrified but going ahead and doing what must be done—that’s courage. The one who feels no fear is a fool, and the one who lets fear rule him is a coward. ― Piers Anthony

Courage is about doing what you’re afraid to do. There can be no courage unless you’re scared. Have the courage to act instead of react.” — Oliver Wendell Holmes

(2) Following Your Heart

“Passion is what drives us crazy, what makes us do extraordinary things, to discover, to challenge ourselves. Passion is and should always be the heart of courage.” ― Midori Komatsu

And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” — Steve Jobs, Stanford commencement speech, June 2005

To dare is to lose one’s footing momentarily. To not dare is to lose oneself.
 — Soren Kierkegaard

“It takes courage … to endure the sharp pains of self discovery rather than choose to take the dull pain of unconsciousness that would last the rest of our lives.” ― Marianne Williamson, “Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of ‘A Course in Miracles'”


3) Persevering in the Face of Adversity

When we are afraid we ought not to occupy ourselves with endeavoring to prove that there is no danger, but in strengthening ourselves to go on in spite of the danger. — Mark Rutherford
A hero is no braver than an ordinary man, but he is braver five minutes longer. — Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 – 1882)

Most of our obstacles would melt away if, instead of cowering before them, we should make up our minds to walk boldly through them — Orison Swett Marden (1850-1924)

Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the   day that says I’ll try again tomorrow. — Mary Anne Radmacher

“Go back?” he thought. “No good at all! Go sideways? Impossible! Go forward? Only thing to do! On we go!” So up he got, and trotted along with his little sword held in front of him and one hand feeling the wall, and his heart all of a patter and a pitter.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit

“It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.” — Mark Twain

(4) Standing Up For What Is Right

Sometimes standing against evil is more important than defeating it. The greatest heroes stand because it is right to do so, not because they believe they will walk away with their lives. Such selfless courage is a victory in itself ― N.D. Wilson, Dandelion Fire

Speak your mind, even if your voice shakes — Maggie Kuhn, Social Activist

From caring comes courage. — Lao Tzu

Anger is the prelude to courage. ― Eric Hoffer

(5) Expanding Your Horizons; Letting Go of the Familiar

Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore. — Lord Chesterfield

“This world demands the qualities of youth; not a time of life but a state of mind, a temper of the will, a quality of the imagination, a predominance of courage over timidity, of the appetite for adventure over the life of ease.” ― Robert F. Kennedy

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage. — Anais Nin

(6) Facing Suffering  With Dignity or Faith…

 “There is no need to be ashamed of tears, for tears bear witness that a man has the greatest of courage, the courage to suffer.” — Frank

The ideal man bears the accidents of life with dignity and grace, making the best of circumstances. — Aristotle

Until the day of his death, no man can be sure of his courage. — Jean Anoulh

A man of courage is also full of faith. — Marcus Tullius Cicero

See article for courage exercise:



Daily Post/Courage


I considered several options before deciding on a name for my coaching business. I not only desired it represent my personal journey, but also fit that of every client regardless of their goal. The Courage To Shift was the most fitting of my finalists. Change, no matter how large or small would require courage. A mental shift would also be required for success. It’s impossible to transform with the same stale thinking from the past. Like Sonny and Cher, they represent the perfect duo!

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Daily Post/Rube


According to Google, an internal dialog is that voice inside your head which commentates on everything around you. It is the voice that applies logic and reasoning to situations. I’ve survived eons of repeated attempts at reprogramming my internal dialog with my mentor. She definitely had her work cut out for her when it came to the process of refining me! I am proud to say I now relate more to the characteristics listed by Ditchfield, than a rube. I will always be a work in progress, but proud of the current growth spurts experienced so far!


The Courage To shift, At Your Service!

I’ve come to realize that the decision to start my own business was the easiest part of the entire process, even though 15 years passed before I finally found the courage to take the first step. Deciding who I was here to serve proved to be more of a challenge.  I knew I needed to focus on areas in which I am not only passionate but also in which I’ve excelled. For this reason, my initial thought was to focus on finances and weight loss. They seemed like natural choices as I have succeeded at both. I have lost (and refuse to ever again find) the 70 pounds I shed over 10 years ago! Like many others, I’ve attempted to lose weight unsuccessfully many times over the course of a 20 year span. I was finally successful only after I wrapped my head around MY truth, which is that weight loss is mental. I’ve also successfully gotten on track with my finances and are not only debt free (except my home which will be paid off early), but I’ve recently graduated a son from college with a degree in Engineering, debt free! I’ve also successfully changed my family tree!

Interestingly enough, the other areas of focus came to me later by way of my higher power. The first message received was to serve others that desired a fresh start in life. I myself needed my own fresh start after job hunting (not a career) for several years due to the volatility of my chosen field, and having already been laid off once at my current work location. At 49, I decided to obtain my Life Coach Certification. It took a lot of courage to overcome my fears, shift my mindset (hence the name of my business, The Courage To Shift) and return to school among students that were the age of my children. During the process,  I realized there were many in jobs they no longer loved (and possibly never even liked),  but wasn’t sure how to move forward so they just accepted where they are. It was exciting when I realized  this is an area I am definitely passionate about, but I also actually qualified as an expert in that field as I’d done it! The second message received was empowering women as they transitioned through the divorce process.  It wasn’t natural to think I excelled at divorce, and it certainly wasn’t something I was proud of. The decision was made for me, however, when as I was asked to be the Life Coach at a monthly divorce clinic in Gilbert, Second Saturdays. I COULD be considered an expert as I have been divorced more than once and not only learned a lot, but we both survived,  lol. Even though I said yes initially because I did not want to turn down any opportunity, I realized I definitely had valuable experience to offer these women. I stood up and took control of my life after 46 years, setting aside the fears and insecurities that had kept me frozen for far too long. Even more importantly, it’s an opportunity to take part in assisting other women by walking beside them as they realize they are more powerful and capable than they initially thought!! The word “empowerment”, alone just excites me!

My website, lists my upcoming events. This week, Friday, September 16, my son and I are being interviewed by Shanna Tingom with Heritage Financial Strategies regarding my son’s debt free graduation from ASU. I also just started leading my  Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University 9 week get out of debt course, and I just confirmed a second class that will start on October 6th. It’s hot off the press so not listed yet. It’s an honor to be of service!