Week #10 Challenge: Let Go and Be Vulnerable
This week we are talking about fears. Fears that inhibit you, that stop you from doing and enjoying things that others may easily do and enjoy. Things that for one reason or another, known or not, creep into your mind and your heart and make it practically impossible to put one foot in front of the other and LET.GO.
On the grand scale, my biggest fears including flying, heights, dying and public speaking, not necessarily in that order. Probably not that different to most other peoples’ most-feared list. But I wouldn’t say they inhibit me from doing things on a daily basis.
I hate flying, but I do it, because if I don’t, I will never get to go to amazing places or see friends who live far away. I heard someone once say, “It’s not the flying I’m afraid of, it’s the crashing.” I might be the same. My fear of heights and planes probably do keep me from bungy jumping or sky diving, but I don’t feel like I am missing out on anything there, so it doesn’t worry me! Or maybe it’s my fear of dying that keeps me from those things?? Either way, I don’t think that’s really what this challenge is getting at.
I have a fear of people I know “IRL” finding this blog. A few people know about it, but not many. I know, I probably shouldn’t publish something so publicly if I don’t want others to find it, but I love my mostly-annonymous part of the internets.
I have a fear of something happening to either me or to Nick, and not getting to live to a ripe old age and see my son marry or to see my grandkids. I think this is mostly born from losing my dad at such a young age – he was only 61 and only got 2 years as a granddad.
I have a fear of 30 years from now, having so many regrets, and not being able to get the years back to do it again. Even now, I fear my best years are behind me.
I have a fear of never doing anything important. Of my life, in the end, meaning nothing, having no legacy.
I have a fear of people not liking me. Of becoming a bitter, grumpy old lady, who people don’t want to be around. I’ve seen it in my family. It is not nice, for anyone involved.
I have a fear of failing. I’d love to be a photographer. I’ve done a few sessions with friends, friends of friends, and everyone has been happy with what I’ve done for them. But I am terrified of putting myself out there and failing. Of that first messed-up shoot, of which I assume every photographer has one. I’m afraid of being called a fraud by other professional photographers because my work is sub-standard.
I have a fear of fear! No one likes to be afraid. I don’t like that sickening feeling in my stomach, the voices in my head that fill me with irrational, you-watch-too-much-TV thoughts, that make me feel nervous and anxious about leaving my son somewhere, or doing something as simple as driving on a motorway. The feeling that something bad could happen at any second, because bad things happen all the time.
The only way I know how to calm these fears is to constantly remind myself to live in the moment. To be grateful for each day. To keep going with the gratitude journal and seeing all the good, all the blessings in life. Because yes, it COULD all be over in the blink of an eye. But if it is, do you want to have spent your last moments, days, months, not doing anything because of what might happen. The only worse than dying, is not living while you have the chance.
If people from my “real life” find this blog, it is not the end of the world. I have censored myself enough to not be worried about anyone finding something I’d rather they didn’t know.
If all I do is worry about something happening to me and Nick, and live my life by that theory, we will never go anywhere or do anything and will lead a rather miserable existence. I have to let that fear go more than anything else. Our odds are good!
I don’t have any significant regrets from the last 33 years, so why would I suddenly start having them now? I have made the best choices I could, there’s no reason that would stop any time soon. I know that I would not regret going to New Zealand for a holiday, but I would regret NOT going. And I think that’s how I’ll make my decisions from now on.
I’m raising a gorgeous, generous, kind child, and being there for him, giving him all the opportunities in the world is certainly important. It will be the most important thing I do in my life. And that is enough. Anything else is a bonus, and when opportunities present themselves to do something amazing, to give back to others, the community, I will do them. I may not cure cancer, but if I can make a difference in 1 persons life, then my life has been important.
For every fear, there’s a rebuttal. For every fear, there’s a logical, rational affirmation that everything will be ok. It is literally NOT the end of the world. If the acceptable worst happened, the sun would still set, and rise, and life would go on.
I will not let fear rule my world, my choices and decisions. I will not let it make me sick with worry, anxiety and stress. And if people don’t like me for who I am, then it’s their loss. Because I am awesome. Just ask me.
It’s not too late to join in with Deb and those of us participating in her 52 Weeks to Simplify Your Life challenge. Join in where you want, catch up if you want, link up if you want, or don’t. At least read the challenges and give yourself some food for thought.