The definition of bravery is: brave spirit or conduct; courage; valor. If you want to be successful in any endeavor, you will have to display signs of bravery.
In our latest article, 5 Entrepreneurial Lessons Learned From Gettysburg, I recently went on a road trip and visited Gettysburg along the way.
While visiting Gettysburg, it intrigued me to learn more about the Civil War. I’d known a little at the time of my trip but wanted to learn more.
Last night, I looked for different movies on the Civil War. The movie Gettysburg was over four hours so I decided to watch it at another time.
I came across the movie, The Free State of Jones. It was a movie about a man named Newton Knight. I never heard his name before watching the movie.
Newton Knight was a Confederate soldier while being a Southern Unionist. Those two don’t go together very well.
Knight became a Confederate deserter, a crime of treason and something he could’ve been hanged for if he was caught during the war.
Besides being a deserter himself, Knight led an army of deserters in Jones County, Mississippi. They survived to see to the end of the war.
Knight displayed multiple acts of bravery throughout the movie, and while I haven’t read the book, I plan to.
With the acts of bravery Knight showed, you can use them to take you to the top of wherever you want to go.
Push Through Your Fears
Knight realized what’d happen to him when he became a deserter during the Civil War but he didn’t let that stop him.
Too many of us possess fears that stop us from becoming the person we are meant to become.
Are some fears rational? You better believe it! It’s a rational fear for Knight to reason he’d be caught and hanged for treason. But from the other side why would the Confederate Army track one deserter?
The fears that the majority of us develop aren’t rational. They’re just parts of our imagination that hinder us from accomplishing amazing things in this world.
When Knight pushed through his fear of getting caught, he realized that he had nothing to fear. For him, it was fighting a war he didn’t agree with and most likely become a casualty or get killed by his own army which was unlikely. The odds were better with him as a deserter.
When you’re starting a business or trying to better yourself, bring forth the fears you have.
Write the fears you have on a piece of paper. This was something I did when I had enough of where I was in my life. I’d been letting my fears hold me back for too long.
With the piece of paper, I wrote every fear I had and labeled them 1-10. 1 being the easiest fear to get over and 10 the hardest. No matter how long It’d take, I was determined to get over every fear I had.
What I learned is that the hardest part of overcoming your fears is getting started. The quicker you can go after your fears, the better off you’ll be.
Leave Behind The Known
Knight knew what was likely to happen to him if he continued to fight. What he didn’t know was what would happen to him if he became a deserter. He wasn’t sure where he’d live. He didn’t let that stop him from becoming a deserter.
When you’re trying to accomplish something you’ve never done before, you need to step into the unknown.
I get it. Stepping into the unknown isn’t easy. It’s always easier to read a blog post like this and to realize you should step into the unknown, the hard part is doing it.
Where are you in your life? Are you happy? Are you satisfied? If you aren’t, then you have nothing to lose by chasing your dreams.
You deserve to live a life that leaves you happy. As a country, we’re unhappy. It shouldn’t be this way. If most people followed their passion our society would be a lot better.
You need to take a leap if you want to get to the next level. Everyone who’s become successful has had to make that leap. I guarantee that once you make the jump, it’ll be the best decision of your life.
Most people stay where they are in life because they’re scared of the unknown. Even if they aren’t happy with where they are, they’ll stay there because it represents the known. They don’t want to take the chance to see if something can become better.
Leaving behind the known can be one of the best decisions you make.
Become A Leader
When you display bravery, you will become a leader. We look up to people who are brave enough to accomplish what we want. Whether it’s being the first man on the moon or starting a billion dollar business.
How are you supposed to lead others if you aren’t brave? Show others how far you will go for a cause. For Knight, this was leaving the war. His fellow soldiers tried to talk him out of it, but he wouldn’t let them change his mind. Eventually, his friends who tried to talk him out of leaving the war joined him as a deserter.
Knight became the leader that the other deserters needed. He displayed bravery during the toughest of times. There were multiple times he could’ve been caught. He showed valor for his fellow deserters.
No matter what profession you’re in, if you want to be known, become a leader. It will be easier said than done. To become a leader, be someone that people will follow during the good and bad times.
A leader is someone who actions go along with how he speaks. It goes back to the old saying, do you practice what you preach? A leader is someone who does.
When you think of becoming a leader, become someone who’s worthy of following.
Believe In Yourself
Believing in yourself, especially in the beginning isn’t the easiest. But you need to develop an unrelenting belief in yourself if you wish to be successful.
Would you want to take advice from someone who thinks they can change the world or someone who knows they’ll change the world?
Knight believed in himself that he was making the right decision to leave the war. He understood the implications it’d have on himself and his family, yet he realized it was the best decision at the time.
To believe in yourself, you need to develop self-confidence. As a beginner, you can look at those above you, wishing you were them. Remember, almost every successful person started off you like or I, they had to work their way to the top.
To develop self-confidence, take action every single day. Knight took the action to leave the war and also ambush a group of Confederate soldiers. He had to have an unrelenting belief in himself.
If you take consistent action each day, over the course of a year or two, you’ll gain the self-confidence you were once longing for. You’re not supposed to know everything in the beginning.
We can conjure up negative feelings toward ourselves without realizing how special we are. You have been given the gift of this life. Why would you spend a second not appreciating everything you have?
Look at everything in a positive light. If you can, at the end of the day, write everything you accomplished for that day. This will help you develop the needed belief in yourself.
You will not go anywhere you want in life if you aren’t willing to take risks. This can go back to leaving behind the known. Taking risks correlates with taking a leap. The leap is the next level of your life.
What’s holding you back from taking risks in your life? You will always be too young or too old. You’ll never have enough money or the right connections. These are excuses you continue to make up in your head. Excuses mean you don’t want it bad enough. Because if you wanted whatever you’re after, you wouldn’t let excuses stop you.
Each of us has excuses that stop us from taking risks. That doesn’t mean our excuses can stop us from taking risks forever. Even if your excuses make a valid argument, push through them!
Trust me, as you go on, you will take on greater risks. You will laugh at what you faced in the current moment. Remember, a different level requires a different you.
You might not be comfortable with the risks you take. That’s understandable. You wouldn’t be normal if you didn’t feel nervous taking on a risk. But the choice comes to, do you want to change your life or remain where you are?
Don’t view a risk that doesn’t work out as a failure. The only way it’s a failure is if you stop trying. You learn from the risks you take and better equip yourself for bigger and better risks. Through failure and risk taking, you’re giving yourself the opportunity to grow.
You will never achieve your dreams by playing it safe.
Start A Movement
If you want to start a movement, you will have to show bravery. Knight became a deserter and this leads to others joining him. They understood the risks they were taking.
Think of Martin Luther King Jr. who started a movement and had to display bravery. Despite the repeated death threats he received, he didn’t let that stop him from getting his message out to the world.
What’s a change you wish to see? Why can’t you be the person to start a movement? All it takes is one person to change the world.
In today’s age, it’s easier than ever to start a movement. During the Civil War, Knight had to act alone because everyone perceived him as crazy. After some time, people finally joined him.
You can share your message with the world today and have over a million people read that message by tomorrow who want to join your cause. If you have something to say that can improve the world, don’t hold back!
When you do something that no one else will, you show bravery and will start a movement.
What does it mean to be brave for you? Let us know in the comments!