(A note from Jeanne)
As I grapple with a particularly difficult decision in my personal life, it is clear to me that I need some courage. Not unlike the Cowardly Lion in the Wizard of Oz, I find myself wanting to cower and run in the other direction. It would be so much easier to turn away.
The problem with courage is that it has two major, nasty components that you have to overcome before you can be courageous. Those are fear and doubt. Fear and doubt are not friendly or admirable emotions. They do not feel good. Yet, they underlie and precede courage. Some acts of courage are instantaneous, split-second decisions of heroism, others take time and are less clearly defined.
It seems that courage is a mixture of fear, doubt and something else; something else that boosts you past the resistance. I do not know what that something else is. Maybe it has a name. Maybe it is different for each person. But, it is the important character driven component of overcoming that sets the courageous person apart from someone else. The image that comes to my mind is the booster rockets that get the Space Shuttle out of earth’s atmosphere, that giant thrust needed to get up and out.
Acting on a clear decision to do the right thing, the best thing, in spite of its inherently frightening or difficult aspects is courageous.
I applaud each of you for your clear courage in getting out there and doing the work – the thing – of working toward this amazing goal of the half marathon.