Fear of failure. Fear of not being enough. Fear of the unknown.
These are just a few of the fears I struggle with daily.
Most people are. Even those close to me.
True, I take risks. I step into huge things. I produce content from nothing more than an idea in my head. I engage in public speaking. I post videos and images of myself and talk about the struggles I face.
But every time I am afraid of being rejected, ridiculed, found unworthy.
When we want to try something new but are confronted with the fear of failure, or the fear of not being enough, or the fear of the unknown, we can choose to avoid it; to walk away and stay safe.
I lived my life like that for a lot of years... decades actually. All it brought me was more fear and I became stuck in an empty life that sucked all enjoyment out of everything.
Fear tells us we can't.
However, being afraid also gives us an opportunity for a different choice, but most of us do not take it.
In the face of fear we can choose to be fearless.
Fearlessness says we can try.
In trying we learn. In learning we grow. In growth we experience freedom from being stuck where we were and are given the strength to take steps towards where we want to be.
But HOW do we step past fear? HOW do we engage our courage in order to fearlessly live the life we want?
1. Admit you are afraid. Being afraid is OK. When you deny it, it becomes bigger, screaming for attention. Admitting you are afraid steals the power fear tries to wield over you.
2. Trust your gut. Have a nagging dream but are too afraid to pursue it? Trust the dream, not the fear. Giving in to fear will keep you stuck. Choosing to pursue the dream will give you life.
3. Take ONE step. Dreams are full of big, scary, messy unknowns. Trying to achieve all of it at once is overwhelming and the place fear thrives. One step forward, the best one you can think of today, is all it takes to remove a bit of power from those fears. Each step after lessens it's hold. We may still feel afraid, but we gain the strength to step past it.
HOW do I know this works?
I live this out daily.
After being stuck for too long I finally decided I wanted something better. I chose to trust the dream of my gut. It was my dream to live a life in which I could spend all my time encouraging others to live a life they love.
Did I have any idea how to do that? No.
Did I have any experience? No.
Did I have any understanding of how to start or even run a business? Not one iota.
But I did know I could choose to stay stuck in a life I didn't love or choose to stop letting my fears cloud out the dreams on my heart.
I chose to take one step, then another, and another, until things became clearer.
Yes, I have failed.
Yes, I have gotten so overwhelmed I had to shut down.
Yes, I have gotten stuck.
But fearless living is not a life without failure, overwhelm, or being stuck. It's not even a life of knowing exactly what to do, when to do it, and how to get it all done.
Fearless living is a commitment to not let any of those things stop you from pursuing your dreams.
May you choose to engage in fearless living today.
One of my favorite verses from the Bible is Joshua 1:9: "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." My it encourage you today as you consider stepping into fearless living.
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