Life is hard—there's no doubt about it—and sometimes it will seem that if anything can go wrong, it will. That's why courage is so important to leading a fulfilling life. Having courage grants you the ability to give it your all even when things go wrong or the journey seems difficult.

You can probably see how having courage might help you in your daily life. This is the kind of attribute that will not only help you get the job done, but to put in the effort to do it well—and have the confidence to keep your sights high. Your strength in this trait will affect your employment, you personal life, your romantic life, your hobbies, your physical fitness, and in fact, just about aspect. If you aren't confident in your courage, your confidence is something you will want to work on straight away!

Now, it might seem people are born with confidence (and we can't totally rule out genetic inclinations), but please keep in mind that the human mind is a wonderful tool that can be changed! With work and effort courage will be a trait that you put in practice, grow into a daily habit, and soon become an inherent part of your personality. And whether it's fair or not, people will better enjoy your company as well once you have self-confidence!

Courage itself may seem like a single trait, but the Universal Values system actually divides courage into several individual traits which all deserve special attention. You may have a decent level of confidence, for example, but be held back from your full potential because your lacking in one of these traits. Read about each trait and honesty evaluate yourself to see where you need improvement—growth can't happen if you never admit the need for it!

Just like in developing every habit, keeping a record of your progress will help your motivation and point out moments where you were a little weak or strong one day. You will also get in the routine of noticing how you reacted to new challenges and social situations. Becoming keenly aware of your daily performance is essential to your growth in all areas!

Strengths of Courage

  • Bravery — This is a trait that many people think defines courage. While there's more to it than bravery, this trait will allow you to attempt difficult tasks and approach the people and topics that might make you a little uncomfortable, yet in the end be potentially rewarding.
  • Persistence — You are never going to get every job done on the first try, so you need to develop the trait to try again—and try your best. A small handful of people don't know "when to give up," but the majority of us will benefit from more persistence.
  • Integrity — This is the ability to stick with you sense of what's right even when it takes courage to do so.
  • Vitality — This means having energy and optimism. If you can be excited about life and your potential, it will effect everything you do for the better.


Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising which tempt you to believe that your critics are right. To map out a course of action and follow it to an end requires courage.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly. So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.

Theodore Roosevelt

Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear — not absence of fear.

Mark Twain

Golden Mean

Recklessness, Rashness, Heedlessness

Recommended Reading

Find Your Courage!: Unleash Your Full Potential and Live the Life You Really Want — by Margie Warrell

This is a great self-help book for improving on your courage in general.

The Little Book of Courage: A Three-Step Process to Overcoming Fear and Anxiety — by Sarah Quigley and Marilyn Shroyer

This book focuses on facing fears in order to develop courage.

The Courage to Be Yourself: A Woman's Guide to Emotional Strength and Self-Esteem — by Sue Patton Thoele

This book focuses on building courage from the female perspective.

General Rules

Practice virtues daily so that they become ‘habits of the heart’.

Don‘t strive for perfection.

Never give up! Remember: even the greats have off days.

Rely on your intuition.

Avoid extremes. Strive to achieve the golden mean between excess and deficiency of a virtue.

Have fun and enjoy the program with humor and optimism.

Its all right to be cautious - but even a turtle never gets anywhere until he sticks his head out. 14,000 Quips & Quotes for Writers & Speakers