I had a bit of an “ah-ha”moment the other day during a work meeting. A co-worker came to me at 3:30 pm the day before the meeting and asked me to put together a few thoughts about some of the work we do for the meeting with two university professors. I’m sad to say that I was a bit annoyed at this…I was thinking i have an hour to put together a little presentation…FOR PROFS…ugh, i need more time.
I definitely over reacted and really had no problem stringing together a few coherent thoughts for the next morning. As I was sitting in the meeting the next day, feeling pretty inspired by these two female profs–by their ability to use critical thinking, their analysis and the cool research they were doing– it dawned on me i am a fearful person sometimes.
Now, of course this is obvious–we’re all fearful at times, but don’t think I’d ever labelled what I was feeling as fear before.
Those of you who know me, know that I organized a BIG event last year with over 250 high school students. I complained and worried about it A LOT …a lot a lot. I thought that it was because I don’t like event planning, that I’m not a details person, that I didn’t like being the one in charge, that I’d rather be behind the scenes.
What I realized yesterday, is that all of these things are true- but more important ly they are the symptom of a more serious problem….I was scared. Really scared. And instead of knowing my fear, labelling it and moving on, I just used a whole lot of other words to describe my discomfort.
Isn’t it funny how understand one tiny little moment in life clarifies so many other things? All of the sudden I realized that the fear of being in charge, responsible, out on my own was not only holding me back from learning from (and *gasp* maybe evening enjoying) my event, but from countless other potential opportunities.
Describing myself as a behind the scenes” person was just a way of excusing myself out of a challenge–and who knows how many opportunities.
Moving forward I am deciding that I don’t want to be in the back burner of my own life anymore–and that getting anywhere worth going is going to take risk and there is going to be fear. I don’t want to not take a chance in applying for something, moving somewhere or pursuing a passion because I’m scared. That’s no way to live. And I guess I understand that there will undoubtedly be rejection and “no’s” and failure…but at the end of the day, I’d do much rather that than to have never tried at all.
Now, when I feel myself backing away from an opportunity–I am going to look for fear and my heart and then look it straight in the eye. I don’t want to be that woman who misses so many incredible opportunities because I am afraid that I won’t make the cut.
I’m so grateful for the people in my life who demonstrate how to live without worrying about failure…who try and fail and then try again. I’m inspired by the people who have the courage to live their dreams.
I’m going to be one of those people….
with a little help from my friends, of course.