49 Reasons To Be Brave

I make a point of wearing this when I give talks about happiness - because happiness requires bravery.
Brave comes in really bloody handy if you’re a trapeze artist, astronaut or about to land a plane in the Hudson, but otherwise it’s not something we think about a whole lot.

Until, that is, a moment comes along that makes us wish we were brave. Because being brave is how we hope we could be all of the time.

Here are 49 reasons for you to be brave.

  1. Saying yes to that opportunity because of how it will help you grow
  2. Saying no to that opportunity because it won’t allow you to grow
  3. Asking them out on a date, because you love who you are when you’re with them
  4. Finally standing up to a friend who keeps treating you badly
  5. Setting fresh expectations with your partner about what you need in your relationship
  6. Attending that event even though you don’t know anybody there, simply to see what happens
  7. Speaking up in a meeting when there are big personalities around you
  8. Explaining to your boss that you think there’s a better way, even though consensus seems to be against you
  9. Opening up to someone about what you’re really scared about
  10. Asking for help because you’re tired of doing it alone
  11. Approaching someone you admire greatly and asking if you can talk about an idea you have
  12. Saying “Hey” to someone in your coffee line, just because they seem wonderful
  13. Quitting that pet project you’ve been plugging away at because you’ve outgrown it or it no longer energises you
  14. Showing someone else the results of a creative endeavour instead of keeping it to yourself
  15. Saying “Fuck yes” to a new project, for no other reason than it feels fun or exciting
  16. Saying “Fuck no” to a new project, for no other reason than it doesn’t feel fun or exciting
  17. Letting go of a relationship that only makes you feel at your worst
  18. Confronting the reality of your finances and choosing to be responsible for them
  19. Owning up to your part in a bad situation rather than assigning blame elsewhere
  20. Prioritising genuine nourishment over false comfort
  21. Choosing crazy over practical
  22. Believing that you can start, even though you’re not sure you can finish
  23. Letting your partner know what you want sexually
  24. Leaving people behind who make you feel small
  25. Because you finally realise that your heart lies elsewhere
  26. Making yourself uncomfortable when you could more easily have made yourself safe
  27. Leaving behind your home, your town and your friends because of an irresistible opportunity elsewhere
  28. Letting go of how someone hurt you, because it no longer serves you to keep it close
  29. Deciding to learn to do something that makes you feel exposed, like public speaking, yoga or dancing
  30. Telling your manager “No”, you can’t take on any more work right now
  31. Because you don’t want to have it be a struggle any more, and need help on where to go next
  32. Choosing to deal with a block that’s holding you back, like a fear of intimacy, a belief that you’re not good enough or even a fear of flying
  33. Telling someone you love them
  34. Telling someone you don’t love them
  35. Admitting to a mistake you made, even though you might just get away with it
  36. Hearing what your body is telling you, especially if it might be bad news
  37. Standing up for yourself when others are trying to sway you in your thinking or action
  38. Deciding that you can’t fit in with what others expect of you any more, because you don’t like who you are when you do that
  39. Going back to school or college to learn something you really love
  40. Embracing change, even though those closest to you don’t want you to change
  41. Quitting your job because it’s damaging you, even though you have nothing else lined up
  42. Admitting that you’ve been wrong to people whose respect you crave
  43. Because you’re tired of pretending that everything’s great all the time
  44. Deciding to stop trying to be something you’re not to someone who doesn’t want you as you are
  45. Realising that what you’ve been doing won’t make you happy
  46. Letting go of dogmatic beliefs even if those beliefs have defined part of your identity
  47. Choosing to take a stand in your life, right now, rather than just going with the flow
  48. Not hiding the stuff that matters to you just because it doesn’t matter to people around you
  49. Choosing compassion over indifference

Why do you want to be brave?


  1. I want to be brave because. All my life I have always been “nice”. I never express my feelings as I should, I take responsibility for things I should not ,when other people can’t. It has made me a doormat. I want to be brave to free myself of the bitterness of not expressing and articulating my dissapointments, feelings and anger. I wish to one day gain confidence to speak up a bit more. I want to bring out the innate voice I have but have not realised yet.

    • Steve Errey says:

      Beautiful. That little voice inside knows what it’s talking about, and the fact that yo’uve come here and written the words you’ve written tells me that you can have a different experience. What’s a safe way for you to start?

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