“Real courage is doing the right thing when nobody’s looking. Doing the unpopular thing because it’s what you believe, and the heck with everybody.” – Justin Cronin, The Summer Guest
It is not always easy going against the current and standing up for what we believe in. By doing so, we are faced with ridicule and exclusion and often times appear too proud and defiant. But throughout the course of our lives, there are times in which real courage is demanded of each of us. And if I can do the right thing simply because it is what I believe–even when no one is looking, or even if it is unpopular–I become a man of integrity, a man of character.
Therefore, the first thing we must do to have real courage is to have beliefs. What are my values? What makes up the core of who I am and what I stand for? After I have taken the time to recognize these, I can go about putting them into action in my life. If I believe that treating others as I wish to be treated is an important value to me, then I must do that. Additionally, I have to stand up for my beliefs when I see others going against them. So if I see someone being mistreated, I need to stand up for that person. This need not be done in a negative way, or in a way that hurts anyone’s feelings or injures them, because I could have the wrong interpretation of the situation. But I still need to stand up for my beliefs and convictions while respecting the fact that other people have their own.
Recognize and affirm your beliefs. Become aware of what is happening around you. And if anything seems to contradict your convictions, stand up for what you believe in.
Take some time to think about your current beliefs.
Questions to consider:
Do you regularly examine your own beliefs on certain issues? Do you cling to them, or allow them to grow and evolve as you do?
Do you live by your convictions?
What is the danger in comparing your convictions and beliefs with those of other people?
For further thought:
“Good men don’t become legends,” he said quietly. “Good men don’t need to become legends.” She opened her eyes, looking up at him. “They just do what’s right anyway.” – Brandon Sanderson, The Well of Ascension