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How to Show Courage in Your Twenties: 5 Bold Ways

Courage is a powerful trait. It strengthens us to conquer challenges, and this pulls us towards goals that change our lives. Unfortunately, only a few possess this elusive trait.

But here is the good news: we are not born courageous. We attain this skill through learning and risk-taking. Anyone can become courageous, all that’s needed is the right advice.

In this article, we will discuss the most effective techniques to show courage in your twenties. So without wasting any more time, let’s get started.

1. Take Responsibility

Existing in this world are two groups of people: those who believe they have the power to shape their lives and those who depend on destiny. Everyone chooses which of the two to be. The courageous take charge of their lives. They take responsibility for everything happening around them.

Before we go any further, let’s define responsibility, which can mean a lot of things to different people.

In the context of this article, it stands for the acknowledgment of the fact that you are the only one to shape your life.

George Washington Carver Botanist

Ninety-nine percent of all failures come from people who have a habit of making excuses.

Although no one knows the future, it’s foolish to think you have no control over it. That is a sign of not taking responsibility. The courageous influence external events, which may appear out of their control, to their advantage.

A courageous boxer never labels the referee as unfair for his loss. A courageous business manager looks for ways of survival instead of blaming the economy. A courageous soccer team fights to win instead of complaining about bad weather.

Blaming external events for your problems means you deny taking responsibility. And this blinds you from seeing other opportunities.

courage-requires-taking-responsibility

Take Shari Leidich as an example. In 2004, she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and was advised to adopt a raw food diet. Following this, she found her new diet horrible. So she experimented on how to make it more appetizing. And she was successful.

Her food was so good that by 2006, she started selling it. She found a company named ‘Two Moms in the Raw’, which by 2010 was making revenue exceeding $1 million.

Leidich had two choices: either complain about her diet or make it her responsibility to improve it.

Instead of blaming her fate or the food manufacturers, she took it on herself to do something about her situation. And out of that, Two Moms in the Raw was born.

That’s what courage is all about.

If you waste time complaining about things, it means you are giving responsibility to others. You are unconsciously waiting for someone to mend your life. And that will take you nowhere. Instead, take action yourself.

However, many confuse action with motion.

motion-vs-action

Action is the process of doing the thing that achieves a goal. Motion, on the other hand, simply moves you a bit closer to the goal.

Planning to get a degree is motion. But if you study and get the degree, that is action. If you say you will lose weight and research exercises and diets, that is motion. But if you exercise and lose the weight, then you have taken action.

For every motion, follow it with action.

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2. Go against the Rules

Can you name a thing or two at your workplace, your home, or in your society you believe to be wrong?

We opine that because lots of people do something, then it must be right. But this is usually false. Take USA in the 19th Century. Women were not allowed to vote there.

Was this right?

Centuries ago, it was allowed to own slaves, treat them like stones that wouldn’t get hurt. But was this right?

Bad practices like these are still in existence, albeit in a new form. They are in our homes, in our workplaces, and in our communities.

Barbara De AngelisConsultant 

We don’t develop courage by being happy every day. We develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity.

What is it that people normally do that bothers you?

Have you ever tried to speak up against it? If not, I bet you lacked the courage to do so.

To be courageous, you must act with your own mind and on your own terms.

People resist changing their evil ways not because they don’t realize themselves to be wrong. But because change is uncomfortable.

A certain study proved that as much as 70% of change initiatives in organizations fail because of people’s resistance, not because these changes are bad.

However, speaking your mind may not be the most welcome thing. You will offend some, and you will be insulted. Still, you must keep your courage.

speaking-against-bad-things-takes-courage

First, you must believe that you are right. Then you must develop a pitch, which is a fancy marketing term for how you plan to convince others to listen to your view, and in some cases, adopt it.

However, you must keep your expectations realistic. It’s not everyone who will adopt your ideas.

Some people are ready to listen to opposing viewpoints, and argue respectfully while learning. Others believe themselves to be right always, and will not listen to anything that opposes them, even with guns to their heads. Don’t waste your time with such people.

People resist changing their evil ways not because they don’t realize themselves to be wrong. But because change is uncomfortable.

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As more people adopt your views, the adamant may be inclined to change. This was proved in a Cornell University study, which said that more people supporting an idea increases the chances of convincing those in opposition.

3. Let Go of Fear

Courage is not devoid of fear. But the courageous know how to manage their fears.

Fear is a natural response to troubling events. Its presence warns us to carefully examine the situation we are in.

However, most fears are unnecessary. And this is a problem because they hold us from taking action. And without action, we can’t be courageous.

If you don’t control your fears, they may become roadblocks for success. And may lead to other poor habits.

In a study by Bilkent University, it was discovered that fear of failure developed at a young age affects children in school. And that it also erodes their motivation to learn, tempting them to cheat.

lose-fear-to-be-couragous

Thankfully, there are lots of ways how you can let go of fear. Here they are:

Understand the fear—study your fear and establish if it is founded. Sit in quietness and try to discover what is bothering you.

Visualize—this is by far one of the best ways to let go of fear. Visualization puts you in the driver’s seat, face to face with your fear. And as studies have shown, letting the mind experience a scary or challenging event is as good as practical experience.

Alan Richardson wanted to assess the power of visualization on playing basketball. He divided participants into 3 groups. The first practiced free throws for 20 minutes a day. The second only visualized making the free throws without any practice. And the third group neither practiced nor visualized.

At the end of the study, the second group was as good as the first.

To realize the full power of visualization, immerse yourself in the problem. Imagine it in every detail and involve all your senses to conquer it.

Adopt a screw it attitude—sometimes, this can also help.

Watch this video for more on conquering fear.

4. Be Yourself

As a baby, you did anything you wanted, with no concern of what anyone may think about you. You would walk about without any clothes and climb onto whatever that caught your eye. While some of these things were dangerous and inappropriate, they showed how free you were.

being-yourself-takes-courage

But as you got older, this freedom escaped. You were forced to act the way society wanted. Or how your parents, brothers, and sisters wanted. Eventually, you lost your freedom, and with that was the loss of identity.

The self-monitoring concept can help you understand this. Some are high self-monitors while others are low self-monitors. The former avoids offending others by trying to be nice. In some situations, this has advantages, from having lots of friends to promotions.

Low self-monitors are the opposite: they say and do as their minds please. And in some situations, this means offending others.

Being a low self-monitor allows you to be yourself. And this takes courage. However, I would not advise you to take any of these concepts to the extreme - it can backfire. Be yourself. But in doing so, don’t hurt others.

Alan WattsPhilosopher

Waking up to who you are requires letting go of who you imagine yourself to be.

Defining why you are special is the first step to reclaiming your identity. You must know your goals, weaknesses, strengths, and hobbies. And you must shape your life to enjoy and strengthen each of these qualities. Studies prove that doing things that you love increases happiness and enhances wellbeing.

5. Understand Your Emotions

Emotions are not weaknesses. They are an evolution that notify us of dangers and opportunities.

Suddenly becoming angry while in a conversation means your brain is warning you of an uncomfortable remark the other party just said. And it’s wrong to ignore this warning.

it-takes-courage-to-show-emotion

Think of your emotions as a code of a program. They determine how you act and respond to different situations.

If you fail to understand these emotions, you won’t understand yourself. Confusion and lack of fulfillment will be the results. Additionally, you risk being abused by others as they won’t know what offends or amuses you.

If angry, show it. Tell the other person that you are hurt. It takes courage to do this.

Think of emotions as a code of a program. They determine how you act and respond to different situations.

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Another reason to understand emotions is that they influence our decisions. This applies even to the most cold-blooded people. Other studies, these on purchasing, complement this fact by saying our buying decisions are mostly guided by emotions, not logic.

As such, it is a mistake to dismiss emotions as weaknesses. It is these emotions that define where our lives go.

Conclusion

Courage is an admirable trait. And like you saw in this article, anyone can develop it with the right techniques. While some of these may be uncomfortable, your success depends on them. And it’s also safe to say that your quality of life may be determined by them. So dare to be courageous.

Now, let’s hear from you. What courageous things have you done in your life?



By Pulkit Zalani

Pulkit has been there and had a roller-coaster ride. He loved overcoming the challenges. Now, he enjoys helping people in their twenties by writing science-backed articles that help them grow.

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