Many of the most courageous people I know are also the most afraid.
Living with such an intense inner experience of fear – and surviving it – cultivates within them extraordinary capacities to keep going, to face things as they are, to take action when it’s called for, and to be present with others who are afraid.
I know how much I value having such a person by my side when there’s something genuinely terrifying to face. Someone who knows fear intimately. Someone who has found ways to work with it. Someone who already knows what to do.
Many of the most courageous people I know hardly see themselves as courageous at all.
They relate to their fear as a defect, a failing, a reason to judge themselves, as fuel for the harshest inner criticism. That they are afraid obscures the view, so that they’re blinded to the gifts they bring.
They do not see that the part of themselves they most wish to banish is the very source of blessings, the source of their secret superpower.
So it is in the best superhero origin stories, and so it is with all of us.