When I read Harry Potter, I immediately knew I was a Gryffindor. It is not just because I wanted to be in the house the main characters were in. I try to embody the very values which Gryffindors portray. Yet, people constantly question the reasoning. They think bravery has to be grandiose. Bravery is not just fighting villains, breaking rules, running straight into a battle, and sacrificing yourself to save others though. There are many forms of bravery. So, here it is: bravery and conviction. 30 real-life ways I’m a Gryffindor.
If you’re a Gryffindor, you may certainly relate.
- Sometimes we are faced with a dilemma on whether to be straight forward about situations or to downplay our opinions to make someone else feel better. Buttering people up is not the answer. I openly and honestly communicate with others, even when it is difficult to do.
- Despite the prevailing belief by young individuals, bullies still exist outside of a school setting. It is easy to just succumb to the bullies’ opinions and words or ignore the situation if it is not directed at you. Rather than doing this though, I stand up for myself and others.
- I perform on stage.
- I would rather try something and risk failing, humiliating myself, learning I suck at it, etc., than never try it at all.
- In high school, I snuck out of my house, participated in hexennacht*, got into prank fights with my friends, and partook in all kinds of mischief.
- It takes a lot of internal strength and conviction to admit you have a problem. With my mental illnesses, it has not always been easy. But I do what is right for me. I go to therapy even when it is hard, even when people say bad things about me for making that choice, even when it seems like things will never get better. I take my medications despite the stigma and side effects. I admitted that I needed help and followed through on it.
- I give genuine compliments to complete strangers.
- I remove myself from toxic friendships. People who take advantage of others are not friends. Those who intentionally mess with your head are not friends. Individuals who do not ever put effort into maintaining the friendship are not friends. I am not afraid to remove myself from friendships when others do not treat me right.
- I wear silly things because I like them and don’t care what others think.
- When my family or friends or partner are mistaken or I disagree with them, I make my voice heard. I don’t want to lose the people I love, but hiding my convictions is worse.
- I love unconditionally without hesitations or strings attached, even when I’m not sure that it’s reciprocated.
- I stand up for what I believe in.
- I’m weird, crazy, dorky, nerdy, and all around me. I embrace myself for who I am. Got a problem with that? Too bad.
- Traveling! I’ve been to all habitable continents except Africa. (I’m coming for you next!) I immerse myself in their culture and traditions, going with the flow and enjoying every bit of it. Got a unique food? Let me eat it! Walk on fire? Sure, I’ll give it a try! Dance around in sequins and glitter? Yes please! There is a reason that “going on adventures with you” was in my partner’s vows.
- An extravagant, romantic proposal–I proposed to my partner, singing and dancing, with a flashmob at an airport.
- I admit that I scared, but I don’t let it hinder me.
- I’ve been bungey jumping, tree climing, hang gliding, ridden three of the tallest roller coasters in the world, and thrive off of adrenaline.
- I spoke my truth. (Not the business of anyone to ask.) It was harder than anyone could ever imagine to tell people. I cried. But, I said what I needed to say and am better off for it.
- I’ve gone to dinner by myself many times.
- Before you criticize this one, DON’T. It worked out for me. I spent 3.5 years in a long distance relationship with my now-husband before we lived in the same place.
- Nine years ago, I said hi to a young woman who walked into a classroom all alone even though I have social anxiety. She is now my best friend in the world (matched only by my husband).
- I worked up the courage to completely rebuild myself after an accident causing a permanent disability.
- I call the restaurants instead of making my husband do it.
- I say no to things I don’t want to do. (Okay, not all the time; I’m getting better at it though.)
- I write these posts even though nobody may read them or care.
- Don’t take yourself too seriously. I don’t. I laugh at myself ALL THE TIME.
- This one is harder on me due to my anxiety, but I try to sit and do something without distractions of noise, tv, music, radio, etc. at least once a week.
- I advocate for myself. Nobody else is going to.
- I push myself to be the best, most authentic version of myself.
- Lastly, I dare to question and challenge the world around me.
Though these are small, they are huge acts of bravery. It takes a lot of courage to be who you are in the world. Standing up for yourself and your beliefs isn’t easy. It is much easier to follow the crowd.
I am proud to be a Gryffindor. I do not look down on other houses, but I wouldn’t want to be any other house. Bravery runs through my veins. My heart functions on convictions and courage. Shout out to those who related to my small acts of everyday bravery. You are beautiful, wonderful, my kind of people. Sometimes bravery is hard. With people like us out there though, we might just inspire others to live a little braver. After all, we only have one life to live.
*Hexennacht, also known as Witch’s Night, is both a sacred German pagan holiday celebrating the triumph of spring over the cold winter and a celebration of mayhem, chaos, and pranks. In this case, I partook in the pranks in the middle of the night throughout the whole town.