When I was little, I was deathly afraid of the dark. I used to sit up in bed calling out for my parents to come turn on the light just so I could make my way to the bathroom. For a while, my parents would come in, turn the light on, then wait to tuck me back in. But eventually, there came a time when they didn’t come. I yelled louder and louder to no avail. After a few nights of this, I decided it was time I faced my fear. I was probably around eight or nine years old. I can’t say that I overcame my fear – I hadn’t. I was just as scared as always. But that night, I decided not to let fear win. I pushed past the fear and willed myself to get up on my own, turn on the light, and walk to the bathroom. Nothing bad happened; there was no boogie man and I didn’t pass out from fear. The next day, I remember not even discussing it with my parents. And looking back, I don’t recall them inquiring about it either.
Whenever I feel like I’m in a dark, scary, or unfamiliar place, I react the same way. I acknowledge the fear and then ignore it and push passed it. Fear is nothing more than (F)alse (E)vidence (A)ppearing (R)eal.
Writing my first book was a piece of cake. Releasing it was a whole ‘nother ball game. I had convinced myself that no one would want to read it. I was afraid of being judged or ridiculed. I obsessed over the story and held onto it for months. Until one day, I decided to share it with another writer. That single ounce of encouragement propelled me forward, and to this day, is why critiquing manuscripts is one of my favorite things to do. I get to inspire and develop another person’s gift, as my friend did for me. It is tremendously rewarding to be able to help another person reach a lifelong goal. I absolutely love it!
So, what’s holding you back? Fear of what others might think? Fear of changing your current life? Fear of losing something or someone? Acknowledge the fear… then do it anyway.