“You know, sometimes all you need is 20 seconds of insane courage... And I promise you, something great will come of it.” –Benjamin Mee

We Bought a Zoo is such a great movie, heartbreaking and empowering at the same time. In it you see a family suffering from the loss of the mother. In their darkest night, this father and his two children are devoid of connection. They are broken as individuals and a family but throughout the film they rebuild, reform, and overcome their individual pains together. At the end, the father shares that he wouldn’t have even talked to his wife the first time without 20 seconds of courage. In 20 seconds, he stepped into courage, talked to her and from that tiny moment lives were completely changed in the most beautiful of ways. Even though they had lost her, he sees the importance of those 20 seconds. It makes me wonder what we can do with our own 20 seconds of courage each day. If you are like me, your mind automatically goes to the terrifying things you know you need to overcome and that 20 seconds becomes a lifetime. So, I did some research. In 20 seconds someone can:

  • Wash your hands.
  • Ride up several floors in an elevator
  • Run a 200 meter race
  • Completely change their brain chemistry with happy chemicals with a hug
  • Do anything three times in a day to create a positive habit

Those things bring some perspective to 20 seconds. Sure, it will still be scary but as you run into that situation and overcome the fear in those 20 seconds you also make the next moment of courage easier to step into. It becomes a life changer.

What will you do with your 20 seconds of courage?

Sarah Deats

Sarah Deats is the Hope Inc. Stories Inspiration Engineer. Her goals are to make a connection with everyone that she can while building community, spreading hope, and sparking change. She believes that while life may not be easy, it is never lived alone.