Just my Thoughts

Courage of Your Convictions

Another post in honor of Five for Ten which is brought to you by the wonderful sisters at Momalom.com

Do you have the courage of your convictions?  This is often a touchy subject for people.  Dictionary.com defines the idiom having the courage of one’s convictions is to act in accordance with one’s beliefs, esp. in spite of criticism.  Because as parents we have no instruction manual, I sometimes find myself defensive in the view of criticism but that is only with regards to my parenting.  As for other convictions, I make no apologies.

What convictions, you may ask.  Or, you may not really care yet I feel compelled to write about this one important conviction of mine.


My conviction to try to not impact our environment too harshly has been long in the works.  I read Silent Spring while in high school.  I went to college and studied recreational use of forest lands.  I still am an active participant in environmental and science-related activities.

I started recycling before curbside pick-up was available in my area.  While I cannot, of course, find the current number, at one point in time, my county recycled 58% of its solid waste.  I swore that most of that was mine.  I would have a garage full of tied up newspapers, aluminum cans that had both ends taken off and flattened, glass jars that would not be reused.

I would load kids in the mini-van and pack in the recyclables around them. Off we would go to recycle.  No one around me could understand.  My neighbors, when curbside recycling began, could not understand how my bin was always overflowing.  Neighbors could not understand how I wanted to know when other plastics would be added, why we had to separate our recycling, why certain rules applied.

Courtesy abcteach

I do look long and hard at the three R’s – reduce, reuse, recycle.  I try to buy items with the least packaging available, thereby reducing my trash and recycling.  I do reuse containers and other packaging when possible.  I, then, as a last resort, recycle.

Do you have an issue that you always stand up for, that you know – almost without thinking – where you are on it?  Is there something so vital to your core that your friends seldom ask you where you stand?

14 thoughts on “Courage of Your Convictions

  1. My stomach actually leapt, reading your first paragraph. I have strong opinions, strong convictions – but I’m not always so brave as to put them out there. I admire your strength.

  2. There was a time where I stood on my soapbox, regardless of what people said. Then I got scared and felt alone, so didn’t “stick my neck out” nearly as often as I wanted to.

    Now, though, I’m finding that I’m tired of being quiet when I want to yell at the top of my lungs about something I believe in. There are days and some issues that I’m still afraid to speak up about, but that is changing thanks to women like you that I admire!

  3. Nicki! Well, you know I’m with you on the recycling. And I love that you were on the cutting edge of this. It’s easy to preach and not live what you preach. And I think it’s best if we all preach less and live (and recycle) more. Thanks for this take on courage!

    1. Picking your battles is a huge lesson. Sometimes I don’t think I have necessarily learned that one yet.

  4. I’m with Jane & Shawna: I’m not always good about standing up for what I know is right. I also am not the greatest about avoiding hypocrisy (I recycle and drive a hybrid, but jack up the a/c in the summer – oh, the shame!). I’ve found, though, that becoming a mother has helped me be tougher as an advocate for my children. I’ve found the courage of my convictions in standing up for them.

  5. This is most certainly courage. It’s one thing to know what we believe, but another all together to stand by those beliefs when we’re challenged by others. Or when it isn’t easy (like recycling before curbside pickup!) or costs more (like buying local and organic). And I’m afraid I’m such a people-pleaser, I don’t always stand firm. I need to work on this.

  6. You’re right…even when you actions/beliefs are not popular, and you do it anyway. Very true.

    And good for you for standing up for Mother Earth. Bravo!

  7. Well, I don’t mean to be controversial but, being miss Super Jew, people don’t usually ask me if I’m pro-Israel…

    Among friends I make no bones about my political beliefs and my Choice opinion, but I really hate arguing with strangers or getting into some of this hate stuff that’s out there now. I am beginning to feel, however, that if silent ones like me don’t begin to open their mouths and add to the political dialogue, the entire country will be overrun with the loudest voices, and that may not be anything that I agree with.

    Thanks for a thought-provoking post, Nicki!

    1. I know it is not funny, Linda, but I nearly spit tea on the computer monitor as I read your first sentence.

  8. Thought-provoking indeed! And still I think that it is necessary to go gently so as not to harm anyone with the courage of your convictions. Perhaps, that is my conviction?
    Leading by example is so important. Bravo!

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