Dearest friends, let’s talk about fear for a minute. It is, after all, the perfect time of year to analyze this topic.
Nahhh, this post isn’t about ghouls, goblins or the current political climate. Instead, I want us all to take a minute to acknowledge the hot mess witches that live within our minds. Y’all know exactly what I’m talking about – the ones that act all high and mighty and say crap like:
- “Do not apply for that job. What if you get rejected?”
- “You cannot start performing at open mic nights. What will people think of you?”
- “You should not text that cute person you met last week. They’re not going to respond.”
- “Pshhh … do not plan that trip. You don’t even speak the native language, and you’ll never be able to afford it.”
Those witchy voices have so much control over us, don’t they? How many times have you stopped yourself from venturing out, because of fear? Let me tell ya, those witches have held me back a good 490,538,715 times throughout my lifetime. So, I get it. Rejection and failure are really fuckin’ scary, and no one wants to leave themselves vulnerable to those feelings.
But, let me play witch’s advocate for a minute: There’s a solid chance things will work out when you take a calculated risk because, duh, you are way smart + you are a rockstar.
let’s say you do try something you’ve been wanting to do forever, and it doesn’t work out as planned. 😳
You applied for that job and they went with someone else. Cool, send awesome vibes to the person that was chosen. That wasn’t the opportunity the universe had in store for you, but you still gained an incredible learning experience. You’re going to keep hustlin’ for an even better opportunity.
OK, you performed at an open mic night or shared your blog on social media (hello!), and now people think you’re a total weirdo. That’s fine. What other people think of you is NONE of your business. (That’s one of my favorite things to remind myself.)
Meanwhile, you decided to text that cute dude who gave you his number last week at happy hour. He didn’t respond. Forget that hot mess. Guess what? There are LOTS of other cute dudes out there. Plus, you’re all that aaaaand a bag of chips. His loss is definitely someone else’s gain.
Then, you plan your dream trip and work your ass off to pay for the plane ticket and accommodations. You get there, and meals are wayyy more expensive that you planned. No big. You eat one amazing meal, and then grab what you can on your budget … even if that means granola bars + chips. Instagram doesn’t need to know all that. You’re at the destination of your dreams.
See the common thread in these scenarios? Life. Goes. On.
The best piece of advice I’ve ever received
About one month before my aunt passed away, I was going through a stressful situation in my professional life that had me rife with fear. My aunt sensed I was holding onto all of this anxiety, and told me: “Stephanie, the only situation you can’t bounce back from is death, so go ahead and do what you have to do. If it doesn’t work out, you’ll find a way to fix it.”
So, two weeks ago, I channeled my aunt as I contemplated taking one of the biggest, most challenging risks I have ever taken – the one to quit my full-time job and start my own freelance business. This is something I’ve wanted to do for years, but I have always been terrified. Why? Because I don’t want to fail or be judged or be rejected. No one does.
But I held on fiercely to that piece of advice, and continuously reminded myself that when we truly commit to something, the universe conspires to help us.
Guess what? Today was my first day of self-employment, and I am still terrified. My stomach legit hurts as I’m writing this. However, I’m choosing to embrace that fear. I’m using it as my motivation to hustle so freakin’ hard.
Now, I’d like to challenge you to do the same. Embracing your fear is such a good thing. It means we understand the risks, and that we’re willing to challenge ourselves anyway. It means we are acknowledging that even if things don’t go perfectly, life goes on. (Fear is great! Think about it: If we just did stuff without feeling it, that would be SO bad.)
So go ahead, bb! I’d love to hear how you’re going to crush your fears. Shoot me an email [firstname.lastname@example.org], or leave a message in the comments.