the beginning of courage

courage1The beginning of courage

A 2010 survey found a third of Australian women felt constant anxiety and over half experienced anxiety regularly – overall 87% felt anxiety was impacting on their everyday lives. Anxiety is a fear of what is unsure, unknown or unpredictable. Many people fear the unknown and we all too often respond by reducing our worlds into ‘known’ quantities. Just hold this thought and consider another survey of Australian seniors that asked the question, ‘What is your greatest regret?’ Their overwhelming response was ‘I didn’t take enough risks. I always played it safe.’

It is a puzzling conundrum – when we are younger and more able, we don’t take risks yet when we are elderly and limited, we harbour regrets. So what are we to do?

I think we should put together those two great bedfellows: courage and wisdom. Wisdom is the insight we need to make a great decision or choice. We find it in friends, reading, meditation and opportunity. Courage needs wisdom to know when to act but wisdom needs courage to follow it through. When fear, circumstances and people are telling you that you maybe you aren’t up for it, ponder Christopher Robin’s words to Pooh,

Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

That sounds an awful lot like the beginning of courage!

About Kelley

Kelley is a speaker, author, overseas aid worker and perpetual student. She is passionate about women and gender issues, both in the local and international context, which underpins her enthusiasm for kinwomen and its contribution to women ‘living their finest life’. In 2014 Kelley completed a Masters in International and Community Development before establishing The Foxglove Project. Foxglove is a registered charity focused on supporting international development projects that are sustainable and driven by indigenous leadership. Kelley’s paid work requires her to travel extensively to evaluate and support projects supported by Australian funds. This experience and networking enables Foxglove to partner with outstanding overseas agencies delivering real opportunities for the poor and vulnerable to lead independent self-determined lives. Kelley combines these passions with a love of family and faith. Across more than 30 years of marriage, Kelley and her husband have worked through many of the challenges of building a relationship while raising three sons. Their boys have now finished high school changing the dynamics of family life and relationships. One of her great joys is sharing parenting lessons and learning from good and bad (sometimes disastrous) experiences. She uses humour and common sense to talk about the everyday challenges facing parents in today’s context.