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Bravery Is Taking One Step, Then Another, And Another

“Running away from your problems is a race that you will never win.”
~Unknown. 

Be brave. Fight for what you believe in, and make your dreams a reality. You are the only one who can.We are who we are, based on the choices that we make.

What is the difference between leaving something that doesn’t serve you and running away? I think it is several things. The realization that there is nothing that you can do to change the situation. You can only change yourself, and if the situation doesn’t change when you do, then it is time to ask yourself “why am I still here?”

Years ago I had interviewed for a new job and was hired. The first hour of my first day at the new job, I knew that I had made a mistake. The owner of the company had a lot of issues with anger and how he treated his employees. He wasn’t the person that I had interviewed with, and when I interviewed he wasn’t in the office. If he had been, I would not have accepted the position. As an example, when he would walk through the office, he would pull out the fax machine paper trays and if the paper wasn’t completely full, he would start yelling and swearing at the receptionist – even if she had filled them up just five minutes before.

The Saturday of my first week there, I had come to the office to set up my desk with the various underwriting guidelines they used for several companies. While I was there, the owner of the company came in and we started talking. I had already worked for an owner like him, and I had sworn I would never allow someone to treat me like that again. So I told him very clearly that the first time he yelled and swore at me like I had seen him do with others, would be the day I quit.

The day eventually came when it happened. I went into the storage area and grabbed a box, and started putting my personal things in the box. Shocked, he asked me what I was doing. I reminded him of that conversation and said I was quitting. As far as I know, I was the first person that he ever apologized to for his bad behavior, and he never yelled or swore at me again.

Now I needed that job to support my family. But I had made a promise to myself to never let anyone demean me again. It took a tremendous amount of courage to go and grab that box. I was determined to be true to my word to myself. I chose to love myself, over the fear of losing the job and income needed to support my family. 

So many of us stay in bad relationships – with our employment, our family, our spouse, our friends. We tell ourselves that we have no choice but to stay. But we always have choices. Our happiness starts with us, and how we not only treat ourselves but how we give permission to others to treat us. I could only make that choice because I loved myself, and trusted that doing the right thing would work out in the end.

The job, the relationships with friends and family, this is not what makes us happy or unhappy. It is how we treat ourselves with our inner voice inside our heads. The way we talk to and about ourselves is how we give unconscious permission for others to treat us. 

Words like, “you are so sensitive, can’t you take a joke?”, or “how stupid can I be?” or, “how naive and gullible you are”, or “You are making things worse, this is all your fault”. “I am always that last choice, never good enough.”

You have to believe that when you leave the wrong people or situations in your life, that the right things will start happening. The only way to get that kind of trust is to just leap in faith that it will work out. It is like the chicken or the egg scenario, they both happen at the same time.

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Paulo Coelho said, “If you’re brave to say “goodbye”. life will reward you with a new “hello”. He also said, “You are what you believe yourself to be.” If that is true, what not believe yourself to be brave? Be the person that you are afraid to be, the one that doesn’t fit in, the misfit, the strange one. The words to the song, “Renegades” “long live the pioneers, rebels, and mutineers, go forth and have no fears.”[/message] [su_spacer]

The only way to discover what you are truly capable of is to take leaps of faith across the chasms and up into the heights of trees. It is what is necessary to push out the boundaries of your comfort zone, or to decrease the size of your tolerance zone, as the case may be.

Refuse to be confined in accepting a mere existence for a life. Existence isn’t real security but is instead a cage. May your heart be brave, your mind be fierce, and your spirit be free.

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Sheryl Silbaugh
Sheryl Silbaughhttp://lemonademakers.org/
SHERYL Silbaugh is a writer, speaker, and transformational coach. She is a Director at Bank of America. She is the founder of LemonadeMakers.org created to inspire people to transform grief into gold. In April 2010, Sheryl suffered the loss of her nephew, who was randomly killed by a gang member. The idea of LemonadeMakers came from her grief. She experienced firsthand the creative power of transformation. She started a small Facebook presence that has grown from 500 followers in July 2015 to over 47,300 in March 2017. She demonstrates how to take life’s lemons and make lemonade. She is a skilled guide for those experiencing transition or loss. When we let go of what no longer serves us, and open ourselves to our soul’s calling, we uncover the treasures of our experience and can let the rest blow away on the winds of healing. She aims to support people to create transformation in every area of their lives. She provides insights on how to collaborate together to manifest their dreams in The LemonadeMakers Club. She teaches how to explore our inner and outer world to see what needs to be transformed. She is gifted in her ability to see patterns in human behavior and asks just the right questions to start unlocking the doors to your life purpose and the unique personal genius that we all have. Her book, “Timeless Treasures” will be published the summer of 2017, a collection of over 90 essays on transformation.

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7 CONVERSATIONS

  1. Everyone I’ve talked to that does self reflection comes up with “escaping to the cave”. Its a mental or physical thing we do that makes us want to disengage to plan, heal, and self reflect. Some of us rarely leave the cave. And when this happens, all the things that we know we should be doing just don’t get done.

    • I totally agree. I always think of the scene in Return of The Jedi, when Luke goes into the cave. He thinks he is going in to face Darth Vader, but in reality it is to face himself. That is the part that is hardest to do, face who you really are, underneath the stories and myths that we tell ourselves. It is fear that keeps us in the cave, because in facing the reality of who we are, we come across the purpose of our life. And that means that we have work to do.

  2. Sheryl so much of your experience was mine. I get your meaning behind your actions. Certainly we can’t move forward when everything ahead of us is holding us back. The only time two negatives make a positive is,in math.

    Congratulations on your stellar success of LemonadeMakers. WOW!

    • Thank You! I think that we all have those moments in our life, where we are holding our breath as we walk away or towards something that scares us silly.

      These past few years creating the LemonadeMaker Community has changed me so much and every single step has been scary and exhilarating at the same time – just like a roller coaster, only in a good way. Hands up and screaming in delight, pushing boundaries I didn’t even know I had.

      Living a transformational life certainly keeps you on your toes.

      • I’ve come to the conclusion I am more of a merry-go-round girl than a roller coaster. I can remember the last time I worked on a project that was , “Hands up and screaming in delight, pushing boundaries I didn’t even know I had.” That’s wonderful that you are making things happen.

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