June 25, 2007

Confidence or courage?

One of my clients recently was awarded Businesswoman of the Year from a local organization called Women's Economic Ventures. WEV is singlehandedly responsible for having sent over 1,000 women into the world of entrepreneurship with complete training, preparation, and support.

In her speech, my client quoted Maya Angelou:

"One isn't necessarily born with courage, but one is born with potential. Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can't be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest."

She mentioned to me how we usually talk about having confidence as a speaker, but she felt that it was actually a matter of courage.

To me, confidence is knowing you can do something. Courage is not knowing if you can do something, but taking a risk and doing it anyway.

What do you think? Is there a difference between courage and confidence? Does one negate the other?

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3 comments. Please add yours! :

Anonymous said...

Courage is the ability to put yourself at risk, unsure of what the final outcome will be. Confidence is the realization that no matter what the outcome, you will be able to deal with the results.

Rowan Manahan said...

Fabulous post Lisa - you've hit the nail absolutely on the head.

My other thought on courage is that it is usually something that is attributed after the fact. One doesn't get out of bed saying, "I'm going to be really brave today." One does something brave and someone says afterwards, "Wow! That was really brave."

My all-time favourite quote on this: "I did not get on the bus to get arrested. I got on the bus to go home." (Rosa Parks)

Lisa Braithwaite said...

Thanks, Jacki and Rowan. Great insights, as always!

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