The greatest mistake you can make in life is to continually be afraid you will make one.
Day 7 of the 30-Day NaBloPoMo Writing Challenge
Fear, it’s such a complex thing…so basic and primal yet so layered and manipulated by the individual head-trash we all carry around.
Fight or Flight? Catapult or Anchor?
As a kid I had no problem leaping out of trees, off roofs or on a four-inch wide balance beam. As I got older I transitioned into throwing myself off diving boards. Now, in adult life I spend more time launching off invisible platforms.
It was a lot easier when the neighborhood kids yelled out their “double-dog-dares” because knowing you had an audience for your spectacular feat was important. They were there to goad you into something brilliant or stupid, it didn’t much matter; to witness amazing success, or run like a bat-out-of-hell to go get your mom to let her know you were crumpled in a pile and might need medical assistance. Some of my most epic wipeouts were legendary. They brought me bragging rights and a golden glow around my head as a super-hero of sorts.
Where’s my posse now?
Where are my crazy friends on the sidelines now, yelling, “Do it! Do it! I double-dog dare you to just do it!” all the while holding a safety net or at least a life-line just in case I crash and burn?
As adults, epic wipeouts are embarrassing, sometimes career ending, definitely deflating.
In spring of 2011, I was hurled out of corporate America from a springboard I couldn’t at the time identify. The plunge has been a steep one, but boy has it been fun.
A lot learned
A lot of growth
A lot of new people in my world
And more than just a few “Ugly Cries” (credit for this name and ritual goes to one of my BFF’s)…
Let’s talk for just a minute about those lovely “Ugly Cries” (you know the ones with the lower-lip sucking in and out, snot streaming out of your nose, and mascara running down your checks…lying on the floor either prostate or curled up into a ball is optional…well you get it).
I found that those are the manifestation of me doing battle with me; fighting myself for the right to get out of my own way to create the courageous change that I need, want and deserve. I also found out that the screaming band of crazies yelling “Do it! Do it! I double-dog dare you to just do it!” are still there. Some have different faces and some I had to invite to come out to play but their hearts are still the same.
Cheering me on to succeed,
Throwing a life-line if I get stuck
And ready to call 911 if I crash
Fear is not something that ever goes away (thank goodness), but I chose to use it as a catapult rather than an anchor…. At least that’s the mantra I will keep chanting as I walk to the edge of each high dive.
What’s your best catapult or anchor moment?
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