What Isn’t Done Boldly Is Done Badly

James Walpole/ August 6, 2020

There is a good rule of thumb for human behavior: whatever isn’t done boldly is done badly. 

Courage is of course, as CS Lewis argued, a sort of meta-virtue, “the form of every virtue at its testing point.” But I’m specifically speaking of boldness, in the sense of daring confidence. 

The man who is bold enough will hunt, gather, and grow his resources, or trade good value in labor or products to get them. He will disregard his fears of failure, judgment, or insufficiency. A man who lacks boldness will mooch and steal in petty ways when others aren’t looking. 

A man who is bold enough will approach women confidently. A man who isn’t bold enough for this may descend into the underworld of porn. 

A man who is bold enough will admit to mistakes when he inevitably makes them. A man who isn’t bold enough will hide mistakes, make excuses, and blame others. 

You get the idea. This rule isn’t universal (some bad deeds require daring, some daring gets you killed), but I’ll say that at least in my experience, timid action rarely does right. 

James Walpole

James Walpole is a writer, startup marketer, and perpetual apprentice. You're reading his blog right now, and he really appreciates it. Don't let it go to his head, though.

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