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STOP. Stop being afraid. Stop speaking all of those fears into existence that freeze you in place and keep you from moving forward.
To co-opt a line from an the upcoming movie, Aft.er E.art.h…
The challenges are real. Fear is a choice.
I chose to face mine and move forward. Now, don’t get me wrong…I have fears. Lot’s of them. Every time I go out for a ride with the Baltimore Metro Cycling Club or the Observation Crew, I’m scared – afraid I’ll get dropped (which happens EVERY.SINGLE.TIME) because I’m not strong enough; fast enough, good enough. But I load my bike up every chance I get, and ride with those brothers, trembling, laughing, pushing – getting better, stronger, faster each time.
I was afraid of going back to school – I’m too old, what about my family, money…blah, blah, blah. But instead of putting it off and making excuses,I drove myself over to the school and enrolled.
There is plenty of things that give me pause, but I decided I could either be paralyzed by my fears or I could acknowledge them, deal with them and keep moving forward.
So, how you ask? Well, for me, I don’t believe that fear comes from God. I simply reject the notion that God would give me the idea, the ability, the dream to achieve something and also give me paralyzing fear that would keep me rooted in place, making excuses and staying the same. The fear, the doubt, the worry is there, but I tuck the all in my handy dandy mental wheeled suitcase, slap my courage sticker on that sucker and pull it behind me – and occasionally, I leave it behind. I refuse to give life or power to my scaredy cat luggage. I abuse it, I kick it, I bully it into submission.
And I move forward.
I ride with faster and stronger cyclists. I run with faster & better runners. I get into open water as much as I can even if I have to stand on dock for awhile until I can ease my way in and – Just.Keep.Swimming. I let the young adults in class call me Lab Mom and make fun of my highlighters & note cards as I chuckle over their confusion about my skewing the curve with my A. I push through.
What was the point of all this? Just a reminder to all my friends & family to keep pushing, keep moving forward and achieving all those awesome things you want to do – big or small. When you hear yourself making excuses, giving power to your fears (I’m worried I can’t…, I’m afraid this/that is going to happen, I’m scared of…, etc.) STOP.ACKNOWLEDGE.REWORD.
Yep, I may be afraid of getting dropped on this ride, but I’m going to listen, learn and ride as hard as I can, always trying to catch up. They will come back and pick me up and I will learn to draft, I will ask questions…BUT I WON’T BE STOPPED.
Change your self talk and stuff all that self-limiting talk down a hole somewhere. Bruce Lee sums it up perfectly:
OR…you can go with how I would say it…
I choose to keep moving forward. The challenges are real. Fear is a choice. I chose the challenge. What about you?