Wonder what I mean by “Do It Anyway?”
How often do we let fear get in our way of living life fully? How often hvae you thought of walking up to a stranger and introducing yourself…but didn’t? How often have you thought of asking for that promotion or taking that trip…but didn’t? How often have you wanted to sing that song…but didn’t? How often have you wanted to take that class or try that new food…but didn’t. Maybe you got nervous, afraid you wouldn’t enjoy the eperience or fearing rejection or discomfort? I could go on and on with scenarios we often miss out on due to fear… The it is whatever experience you may be robbing yourself of…the experience you’re not sure will suit you…the stranger you’re not sure you’ll have anything in common with…the conversation you don’t think you’ll find stimulating…the party or event you’re not sure you’ll like, or frankly you’re “sure” you won’t…
In my book, Don’t Be a Stranger, I talk about how often people allow fear to get in the way of chances in life, dreaming, risk-taking. By nature, people want to protect themselves from perceived danger and pain. They tend to automatically cycle through thoughts of ‘what could go wrong?’ As my mantra goes, WHAT IF you considered everything that could go right? How different would life feel? What would YOU do differently?
Fear does not know status. Fear doesn’t know wealth or poverty. Fear doesn’t know success or failure. Fear doesn’t know confidence or insecurity. Fear does not discriminate. What sets people apart isn’t fear, it’s a willingness to act despite fear.
Fear not only robs us of joy but of life experience, because the typical response to fear is avoidance! Avoidance of the perceived source of the fear (sometimes a random or arbitrary connection that may or may not be based in a real past threat, sometimes a current real threat). When I speak on this topic, however, my first point is to stress that avoidance is actually a maintaining factor of fear.
The key to overcoming fear and excelling or feeling more in control despite fear follows this mantra:
- Do It Scared: Do it despite your fear, whatever it is. Do it anyway!
- Do It Ugly: Expect that you’ll feel, look, and sound awkward the first few times you confront your fears and do it anyway!
- Do It Often: The most important key to developing mastery and comfort is repeated exposure without avoidance patterns. The goal is progress, not perfection. Be willing to do it awkward multiple times! It’s not realistic to think you’ll get it right and be/feel smooth the first two or two. It’s when you keep confronting your fears and recognizing that your worst fears didn’t happen that you feel a sense of control and mastery! You got this!
When was the last time YOU did it anyway, and what did you do? What came of it? Did you regret it? Were you glad you did it? No matter the outcome, what good came of it? What did you learn about yourself?
That said, go on:
Do It Scared, Do It Ugly, Do It Often
Do It Anyway!