courage Essay Examples

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Published: Friday 25th of January 2013

How to Write a Courage Essay Example

There are many attributes in a person’s life, but few have courage. So what is courage? Courage is the ability to find the strength to face fear or a difficult obstacle. It is something that everybody wants and strives to have in their lives. But is it that simple? Courage gets mentioned in the Bible, ancient myths, fairy tales, books, Hollywood movies, etc. It is the portrayal of a hero who is someone with physical bravery and sacrifices for the greater good. The description of courage can yet get defined as more than just a physical act. The social activists, who speak against injustices, are examples of people who display an act of courage through a different type, but still, it is courage. Entrepreneurs who took the risk to pursue their dreams like Walt Disney also get defined as one of the most courageous people of all time. There are different forms of courage, which range from the physical aspect of mental stamina, emotional bravery, and innovation.

Attributes of Courage

A display of courage that’s common is choosing to act even when you fear to do a task or a feat in front of others. It is the thought that most people have when thinking of courage. Firefighters run to save people’s lives in a burning building whereas most people run in the opposite direction. They know that it is highly likely that things might not go their way but still find the strength to do it anyway. Someone trying skydiving for the first time is an example of another type of courage, and it’s not about being fearless but is rather about being triumphing, despite feeling afraid. This term is applicable in situations where a person persists even facing significant adversities. When we see a Paralympics’ athlete working to overcome their disability and excelling in sport, don’t we all comment on how courageous they are? However, this might seem like a slightly different take on the idea of physical courage or bravery as the person is not frightened but faced with a trial. An inferiorly courageous person might see it as insurmountable. Additionally, courage can be seen taking form in regards to fronting misery with grace and dignity. When faced with humiliation, degradation, and pain, and still manage to keep our composure in those terrible situations - this speaks volumes about our character. It is a way of showing courage. Popular culture is an excellent illustration of this. Outlander is a television show that has an outstanding scene where the hero Jamie Fraser’s back gets permanently damaged after getting 200 lashes. Technically, you would not look at him and think he can get overpowered. However, through the ordeal, he endures terrible pain, but he refuses to cry out. He behaved courageously by bearing his suffering with dignity and poise.

Notable People Who Displayed Courage

Physical aspects of bravery are not the only forms of courage. Courage comes from a more emotional place too. This type of courage gets exhibited by some examples of how people chose to follow their dreams despite the risk that was involved both emotionally and financially. Pioneer entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs and Walt Disney attribute this type of courage. Steve Jobs sold his Volkswagen bus to start Apple even when he was not aware how successful Apple was going to get at the time. Walt Disney, despite filing for bankruptcy and experiencing many failures, never gave up and went ahead in changing the entertainment world forever. Standing up for what you trust is similarly a form of courage. Martin Luther King Jr. and Nelson Mandela are well-known people who have shown this type of courage. They spoke against injustices. Martin Luther King Jr. is known for his role in the advancement of civil rights using non-violence tactics and the civil disobedience. We remember him for the “I have a dream” speech. Through his courage, he received a Nobel Peace Prize for fighting racial disparity into peaceful resistance. Nelson Mandela served a 27-year jail sentence and still went on to become the president of South Africa. His activism gained him international acclaim. Nelson Mandela gets extensively regarded as an icon of social justice and democracy. He received a Nobel Peace Prize and more than 250 honors to his name. Courage is, therefore, displayed when you speak your mind especially when your opinion is in the minority.

Other Forms of Courage

Finally, courage can also come from being brave by stepping out of your comfort zone and exploring new horizons. If not for the courage to want to explore and take adventures, there would still be no discovery of many things in this world. A good example is Christopher Columbus who was among the first explorers challenging the concept that the world was flat. Ever thought where we would be now if he did not dare to sail in the course of the horizon just in case he was mistaken? He left his familiar world and set out to the unknown in search of places which he wasn’t sure were in existence. That took great courage.


Whereas courage gets defined as pushing on in spite of fear, in true essence, it is much more of a compound attribute. People are not born with courage, but instead, they gain it. You can get the opportunity to exhibit courage in numerous ways depending on the situation that you’re in at any particular time. It can mean standing and be vocal against the injustices, or it can be overcoming something that stimulates your fears. Courage is an attribute that every person should strive to have as it not only helps you in your day to day life but also, in future, it will help you get where you need to go. It acts as an encourager, supporter and goal setter for your life. Courage is a trait that one must possess to be an excellent leader or person. Everyone has courage within themselves, it just needs a person to reach down and examine themselves, and they will be amazed to find out that it was there all along.