Courage, Bravery, Daring, Bold


What is the difference between “courage” and “bravery“? Are “bravery” and “daring” the same thing? Then of course, there is also boldness.

On Tuesday last week, my daughter (ENFJ) really unsettled me with her courage, bravery, daring and boldness. This is not a new thing where she is concerned but this time it was very different. I watched her perform a piece of work for a fellow student’s dissertation choreography; in dance and dialogue she recounted the memories of the day, no, not the day, but the moment that my ex-husband told my children that he was leaving.

The intricate detail that she recalled shocked me. She could remember precisely where she was sat, how she was sitting, what she was wearing, where I was in the room, where he was stood, and the exact placement of inanimate items in the room. She told this to a theatre full of people. I wasn’t the only one crying. Daring? Brave? Bold? Courageous? I think all of these and I am incredibly proud.

I think that both of my children have faced their changed world bravely, showing their courage in some very difficult situations. They have both dared to be different in their own way and boldly faced things head on.

 “What’s the most daring thing you have ever done?”

This was a question posed to me by a potential date at the end of last week. Had I been looking at one of those Bear GryllsAction Man, no-time-for-a-real-woman-in-my-life-I’m-too-busy-sliding-down-mountains type profiles I might have read the question slightly differently than I did. Of all of the questions that I have been asked during this strange experience of internet dating, this is the one that I found the hardest to answer and also the one that, being INFJ, I have thought about most.

For the curious* person reading, this was my reply, or more accurately, they way that I dodged the question:

Tough question because this very much depends on your definition of daring! I think there are many things that I have done that are brave and I think this is a good conversation piece to really get to know someone. Occasionally, I need a metaphorical shove to be brave. That said, jumping out of aircraft or off high things on a piece of elastic? Ain’t never going to happen!!

So on reflection, no, I don’t think I am daring at all- but I am trying to find out if there’s a part of me that is and maybe it’s been hidden away. Courageous? No, I don’t think so. I am possibly bold at times. But brave, yes, I do think I have been brave and I have battle scars (real and metaphorical) to prove it.

But most of all, I’d like to know how you define these words, whether you think they apply to you and how would YOU answer the dreaded question…

 “What’s the most daring/bravest/bold/courageous thing you have done?”

*just plain nosey

10 thoughts on “Courage, Bravery, Daring, Bold”

  1. Great thought provoking piece Jane. Love the hard drives in young heads, how they recall the finest of details, hope there’s not hatred there that’s eating at her?
    … and the daring,brave thing? emotionally, none, a woose! physically, hanging off the side of a yacht in a regatta a couple of years back, what was I thinking?

  2. I am an ENFJ, too, but I don’t consider myself particularly daring or brave. Unless I count my blog. Which is sort of brave, I guess. it certainly makes me vulnerable.

    1. What I really enjoy about her being ENFJ are the similarities and the differences we have. Your blog is one of a small handful that has really helped me through. So I thank you.

  3. Publishing this post was brave and courageous – you are both! I don’t think daring is for everyone – certainly not for me. You won’t get me flying in the sky with just a parachute or hand glider! Great post Jane.

  4. I was in tears reading that. Your daughter sounds amazing! Wow.
    As for bravery…well I think you probably know what the bravest thing I’ve done is. Nothing physical of course, I’m a total risk averse person. Hate heights, can’t swim well. But in terms of taking risks in life decisions…yeah, I think I can be brave there. 🙂
    I do love your posts. 🙂

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