The Secret To Freedom Is Courage

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Sometime around 400 BC, the Greek philosopher Thucydides wrote “the secret to happiness is freedom… and the secret to freedom is courage.”

This is a simple truth, but one that still holds today. Anything and everything you want requires courage. The courage to ask for it. The courage to face change. The courage to take the effort to ask for what you want.

The courage to let go.

We talk so much about fear. How often have we heard the saying “everything you want is on the other side fear”? We write about fear, we discuss the irrational fears stoked up by the voices in our heads, we talk about the fear of the new and unknown as opposed to the security of the familiar, no matter how unpleasant. But we rarely talk about courage.

Because while we talk about fear as the thing that stands in our way, as the obstacle, the thing that must be overcome, we rarely talk about the tools we need to overcome it. We regularly repeat the advice that we must focus on the positive, on the opportunities, on the things that bring us happiness, because what we focus on expands. Yet we regularly focus on fear.

But in that phrase Thucydides gives us the solution. The tool we need to focus on in order to combat the fear. That thing that we’ve been missing all this time. The thing that, the more we use it, the more of it we will have.

Courage.

Courage to say no. Courage to assert our wishes, to have an opinion, to say what we think. Courage to step up and make something new. To be better tomorrow than we were today. To venture out of our comfort zone – even just for a moment. To keep going despite the jibes and lack of faith from others.

The courage to try and to fail and to try again. The courage to be our best selves. To pause and be still for a moment. To focus on ourselves when we need to replenish.

The secret to freedom is courage. Courage to forgive ourselves, to love, to see the best in those around us. The courage to listen to the birds singing, to dream, and to hear the wind in the trees.

The courage to be who we decide to be.