Fear Is a Feature, Not a Flaw
Fear is so, so real. I can’t even keep track of the number of times a day I’m scared of something. A few of my fears:
I’m afraid I put so much love and really good advice into this blog and Podcast and not many people read it or hear it.
I’m afraid I’ll spend 2 years writing a novel that no one will buy and no one will like
I’m afraid I’ll post a photo on Instagram of myself in a sports bra and workout pants and people will think I’m desperate for attention
I’m afraid people will book me for speaking engagements and I won’t impact the audience
Success. Ego. Impact. Every day I have an undercurrent of fear running through the threads of my life. And yet, I can’t WAIT for the weekends because that’s when I blog, write my novel, record my Podcast. It’s when I feel so authentically like myself and driven towards my ultimate purpose which is to shine a light on the beauty, power and potential of others. My purpose is to show you how amazing you are and give you the confidence to live any life you choose. I feel the fear and I do it anyways because the purpose and the potential is bigger than the fear.
What are you afraid of? I’m no different than you. I don’t have some fear-crushing capability that you don’t. I just feel the fear and do it anyways. I write, blog and speak with fear mixed into the passion, creativity and energy. I see fear as a feature, not a flaw. I see it as part of the mix of motivation, momentum, energy and excitement of doing things that fuel my soul. It’s an ingredient in the recipe, not the main dish.
Is there something you want to do, but you’re letting fear stop you? Maybe you’re afraid of other people’s opinions. I can tell you from my experience that if other people have had negative opinions about my blog, Podcast, book, pics in workout clothes…they’ve kept them to themselves. So let that fear go. And seriously the older I get the less I care about other people’s opinions anyways.
Maybe you’re afraid it won’t be a success? I get it. I’m afraid my book will bomb. I’m afraid no one really cares about my blog. I’m afraid my Podcast will get lost in a sea of more popular Podcasts. In that case, redefine success. For me, ultimate success isn’t in the number of subscribers or books sold, but in the act of doing something that feels so exciting and authentic to my spirit. Success is following the voice in my soul that says “you have something to say, you should say it.”
So many people tell me they’re so impressed that I do these things and wish they could do something besides go to work and go home. They wish they could find a passion project and really dive into it. I ask them why they don’t and the main thing I hear is “I wouldn’t even know what to do or where to start” and “I’m afraid it won’t be good.”
I didn’t know how to blog. I could basically surf the internet and check email when I started Sips of Sunshine. But I did some Googling and figured it out. I didn’t know how to start a Podcast AT ALL. If computer technology was out of my expertise, audio and recording was even farther outside of it. But I did some Googling and figured it out. I watched tutorials on YouTube about editing audio files. I spent hours learning and trying and messing up and figuring it out. I didn’t know how to write a novel and I still don’t. I’m just writing it in the way that feels right to me. Stop worrying that you don’t know how to do something. We live in a world with every possible free resource to figure out how to do anything at all. Fear is often a cover for laziness. Most people want the thing, but don't want to take the time to learn how to do the thing. Are you scared or lazy? You can overcome both, but don’t fool yourself into thinking you’re scared when really you just don't want to spend an afternoon on Google and YouTube.
Start by giving yourself some time to think about things that excite you. Start a list in your phone and when something pops to mind, add it to the list. Baking! Coding! Public Speaking! Then decide how you want them to be a part of your life. Ask yourself what you’re afraid of. Then redefine the fear. Fear is a feature, not a flaw. Fear is part of doing anything new.
But please promise me this. Don't NOT do something you’re passionate about because of fear. That’s a really cheap reason to avoid something. You’re better than the fear. You’re smarter and craftier and more creative than the fear. You can do it.