Bravery is the antidote to perfectionism. Perfectionism keeps us from taking risks because we fear failing, or we fear we won’t meet our own or other people’s expectations, or we fear we will look foolish. This keeps our life small confined within the stiff boundaries of safety and comfort.
There’s a line in Mary Oliver’s poem Hallelujah that has pierced my soul this morning and created a holy disturbance, “And have you decided that probably nothing important is ever easy.” Wait?! I was promised easy.
We tell our children as they’re running out the door, “Be careful.” What if we told our children and ourselves, “Be brave today and grab someone’s hand and help them be brave too?”
The truth we don’t realize is that the careful path and the courageous path are both hard. Wisdom is choosing the right kind of hard. There is a hard that keeps you trapped living a life less than the life that wants to live in you.
There is a hard that leads to freedom and your rising.
Choose the right kind of hard. Nothing important is ever easy and there’s no such thing as perfect. Brene Brown wrote, “Here’s what I think integrity is: It’s choosing courage over comfort.”
Instead of “Be careful,” let’s tell ourselves and each other today, “Be brave. Choose the right kind of hard. Find a hand to hold on to and jump.” There’s a Native American proverb that says, “As you follow your heart’s path, you will always meet a deep chasm. Jump. It’s not as wide as you think.”