A good friend called me brave today. I shrugged it off, remembering too late the mental Post-It that reads ‘learn to accept compliments with grace’.
I’d just told her that I’ve decided to leave my job.
It’s a safe job with a big company. I get to work from home most of the time and although the pay isn’t great, it’s okay. I love my team, I’m good at what I do and I used to love my job with a passion.
But the love affair is over and so, as the economy continues to flounder, I decided to be ‘brave’. I can guess what you’re thinking.
What does it mean to be brave?
If bravery can only be claimed through the definition above then I’m far from it. I didn’t come to this decision unflinching and fear is my sly shadow friend, skulking at the edges of my day, reminding me of the enormity of what I’ve just done and whispering calamity ridden ‘what ifs?’ into my quiet mind.
I’m not brave then, but I’m happy to be at least decisive.
When I look back on my life I want to remember the decisions that took me forward. Not all will take me in the right direction and some I may struggle not to regret, but I don’t want to look back and realise that I was carried on the current of indecision, too comfortable with ‘the devil I know’ to stick my oars in the water and set my own course.
2020 Postscript: Perspective, as they say, is everything. Fast forward nine years and it seems like we all have far further to fall in these uncertain times. Maybe bravery is understanding the risks, but doing it anyway.