Courageous Presence: Mindfulness Even in Times of Adversity

High line walker between two rocks concept of risk taking and challenge

To live and lead effectively, you must develop and maintain an authentically courageous presence.  This is not to be confused with false bravado.  Authentic courage is actually about love.

Maintaining a courageous presence means you must come home to and be in alignment with your true self, aka your soul and your higher power.

Interestingly, mindfulness is courageous presence, according to Kristen Neff and Brene Brown in an online course on compassion at Courageworks.com.

When you set your intention to courageous presence, you can maintain your focus and center even if all your buttons get pushed and your mindfulness comes under siege.

When strong thoughts and feelings have been stirred, it requires courage to be mindfully present and curious to what is transpiring. This is particularly true when your body’s fight, flight or freeze signals have gotten triggered.  However, mindfulness brings leverage to help you stay present, despite the discomfort associated with the moment.

You also need courage to have self-compassion during the painful moments you often unintentionally create for yourself.  Such moments can result in an amygdala hijack.  Mindfulness practice calms an overreactive amygdala and strengthens the prefrontal region of your brain which helps regulate your emotions.  With mindfulness, you can potentially prevent the regrettable incidents that can occur in an amygdala hijack, such as those in which you say or do things you wish you had not.

Courageous presence is practiced when you mindfully embrace the challenging moments, even in times of adversity.  Do so not only with a full presence of mind, but with an intention of love, a humble curiosity, and compassion for both self and others. This takes patience and practice.

Try today at least mindfully and courageously shaking hands with a small adversity.  Then step back in your mind to simply observe with curiosity as to what unfolds next.

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