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Happiness Takes Courage

Happiness Takes Courage

I heard a quote recently that stuck with me. I don’t remember the precise wording, but the gist was that one must be courageous to be truly happy.  I couldn’t agree more.

In my mind, to be genuinely happy, we must be willing to follow our authentic paths, even when it is frightening or difficult to do so, and even when we don’t know what lies ahead. It is easy to stick to the familiar path. We might not feel as if we are being completely true to ourselves or working to reach our highest potential, but at least the familiar is predictable. The unfamiliar can be terrifying.

Being authentic often demands that we leave behind a job, a relationship, a city, or even an identity we’ve created for ourselves. It requires us to challenge our beliefs and be willing to adopt new ones.  Personal growth is not easy precisely because we must experience difficulties in order to learn from them. Living authentically is not easy – and yes, it takes courage. But it is the only path to genuine happiness.


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Sarah Cooke

Sarah Cooke is a writer living in California. She is interested in organic food and green living. Sarah holds an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Naropa University, an M.A. in Humanities from NYU, and a B.A. in Political Science from Loyola Marymount University. She has written for a number of publications, and she studied Pastry Arts at the Institute for Culinary Education. Her interests include running, yoga, baking, and poetry. Read more on her blog.


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11:55AM PST on Feb 8, 2013

Just copying some Girl Scout material yesterday and found this quote:
"Courage is a muscle - we strengthen it with use" - Ruth Gordon, writer and actress

2:37AM PST on Feb 8, 2013

Easier said then done. Life if filled with surprises. Some good and some bad,but it's our reaction that matters. Thank you for this post.

11:16PM PST on Jan 7, 2013

Thanks for that - so true. I needed to be reminded that the unfamiliar can be scary, but that's not necessarily a bad thing!

1:35AM PDT on Aug 14, 2012

When I jumped out of an airplane I was terrified (I was pushed ...tandem jump) but then I was elated for so long!!

so now I have to figure out what my next plane to jump out of is, because I need courage to find my happiness

6:09PM PDT on Jun 13, 2012

Courageousness or plain stupidity...

12:07PM PDT on Jun 11, 2012

I have found that trying to be my most authentic, happiest self involves facing up to a lot of my fears and insecurities. I agree.

11:09PM PDT on Jun 10, 2012

thanks for the article!

7:24AM PDT on Jun 10, 2012

Thank you for sharing.

6:30AM PDT on Jun 10, 2012

So true. It's sometimes so scary to do things becasue it makes you happy.

6:22AM PDT on Jun 10, 2012

"Let your supreme goal be to make others happy in order to gain happiness for yourself. "
Andrew H, that sounds like just another kind of selfishness to me.

However, you do get back what you give out. So if you're giving out kindness that's waht you'll get from others - and vice versa. Simple, really, and it doesn't take courage to do so.

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