You know the moment… You were planning on doing something new or different (that archery/swimming/boot camp/vocal/insert possible interest here class)… You may have been planning it for quite some time, you may have just come up with it that day, you may have just come across it as you walked down a different street (that new restaurant/fro-yo spot/bar/etc)… Then, at the last minute, hour, day, you back out.
Having moved out to a new city — this is a fear I have been fighting pretty often.
A fear of the NEW and DIFFERENT.
Having started a new job, at a challenging company — I’ve had to battle this practically every single day. Sometimes the fear totally beats me, and I beat myself up for it. Other times, I overcome it, and am disappointed by what I was fighting for. While other times I overcome it and I discover new things I love/dislike/grow to like/etc…
It’s a fear that comes out of change. Fear of having a change in your routine. Fear of a change to your level of comfort. It’s a fear of “wasting your time.” (My life is so busy — why would I take the chance at doing something I probably will not like, when I can just use that time to relax, and do something I have done before…) It is a fear building on a slight possibility of self-failure (failing to know yourself well enough, to actually be aware that you would NEVER had actually liked this.) A fear of just failing in general (what if I’m not good at it — what if the experience doesn’t go well…)
It wasn’t until I moved out here, that I noticed how easy it is to become complacent. I’m a creature of comfort. In routine – I find comfort. Places, people, actions and past times that have a vivid memory attached to them — that cause a sea of emotions to flood back into my mind… That is what I lean towards… Especially in a new city, with barely any memories — where it is practically a blank slate, except for the memories I stretch haphazardly attempting to find some form of similarity and sense of “home”.
Getting over that fear though — is what leads you to amazing new memories (durf! I’m sure I didn’t have to tell you that…) I think it’s pretty exciting that now I’m not ONLY known to be a cook/baker — but as an archer — amongst my friends and family… It is a whole new world I’m excited to share with them all — which I wouldn’t have discovered if I would have given into that fear…
Here are a few things that have helped me overcome the fear of the NEW & DIFFERENT…
1) Go into it with a positive mindset — This might be easier said then done, but you are taking this step because it’s something you’re at least vaguely intrigued by. You may end up being disappointed by it — but even more positively, you will end up knowing it is or isn’t something you are into. You will learn something MORE about yourself — something that up to this point in your life you are unaware of. Embrace the reward of introspection!
2) A Check list of NEW & Different — Creating a check list of all these NEW & Different things to do, will help you in seeing progress. The sense of progress (and checking things off your list) can be used as a motivator to push you through those moments.
3) Remember you most likely will not be good at it (but with practice you can be amazing!) — So you want to take lead on that new project (but have never managed a project in your life.) You want to run a marathon, but can barely make it a mile. You want to try to write a blog post a week, but can barely find time to breathe (personal little shout out there 🙂 ) Rome wasn’t built in a day! And you most likely will not step onto that Salsa Dance floor and figure out you are God’s gift to the Salsa world. But you know what — with time you probably will! If you don’t take that first step, and get over the fear, you will NOT be able to start perfecting your talent, your project management skills, or the appropriate breathing/pacing so you DON’T get tired after a mile. Just as with everything else in life, with time, practice, and experience, we grow to become better at things.
4) Reward yourself! — Give yourself a pat on the back and a positive affirmation every time you overcome your fear, not matter how big or small. Did you have lunch alone at one of your favorite restaurants for the first time? Congratulations! Did you make that call to setup your first driving lesson? Go you! Did you exchange witty small talk with that cute barista? You’re such a flirt! Re-affirming yourself for conquering that fear, no matter how big nor small, helps you get yourself into a routine of positivity for overcoming a fear. Slowly helping you build up the association of positive affirmation, with getting over your fear.
5) Channel the fear into excitement — isn’t this awesome! You’re finally doing that thing you’ve been trying to do for so long! You’re finally moving cross country (yikes O-o) you’re finally putting together that business idea you’ve been talking about by going to this business planning session! you’re finally going back to school by sending out for brochure pamphlets from different colleges you’re interested in!
6) Remember, life is short.
You are FINALLY doing it!
When was the last time you let the fear overcome you? I did it earlier today by NOT sending an email out that could have lead me to learn more about my job and the company I work for. I have been doing it for the past several months by NOT setting up my first driving lesson. But you can bet that come tomorrow — that email will NOT conquer me! And I WILL set that lesson up!
Also — I did overcome it by writing this post out within a night— and putting it up as soon as I finished it…
M to the V