I Will What I Want.
I’m channeling my inner Eva Shockey today for this post. She is a female hunter, has true skill and a passion for hunting, is an incredible advocate for wildlife conservation……..and has TONS of haters. It is pretty disgusting actually if you read comments people make on her IG page.
But does Eva let these haters keep her from pursuing what she loves? Hell no! She acknowledges that these people exist, responds with incredible grace, and carries on living out her passions. We can all relate to being afraid to pursue something for fear of what others will think. This is a normal fear to have, and an extremely difficult one to overcome. As humans, we are wired to care about what others think. We want to make friends and be accepted by society. But, when these fears keep you from what you love most it can significantly hinder the amazing potential that is inside of you.
So, how the heck do we overcome these fears, how do we begin to say “no” to some things so we can say “yes” to the important things, and what happens when you face these fears head-on? Let’s delve in together, because Lord knows I need some courage in my life as well!
Facing Your Fears
One of the main reasons we are fearful to pursue our interests is fear of judgment. Not everybody is going to agree with your beliefs and interests. Going against opposition is hard, and people can be brutal. Sometimes though, we’ve got to be willing to endure a little judgment in order to do the right thing for ourselves. You may be a working mom that decides to stay home to raise her kids, or quitting your day-job to pursue a nonconventional passion that will be more fulfilling for you. There may be some backlash with this, but often it is not nearly as harsh as we imagine it will be.
We tend to imagine the worst case-scenario of how things may turn out if we go against the grain. It’s not likely things will turn out as bad as you imagine, and there’s a way to combat this fear specifically. Think of the worst possible outcome and ask yourself “Could I live with this?” If not, think about how you could turn the catastrophe into something positive. For example, “If I do (insert pursuit here) I may end up failing, losing money that I invested into the endeavor, and it will all be a waste of time.” Can you live with this? If not, reframe the outcome and think, “Even if it does not work out then at least I know it wasn’t meant to be. I don’t have to wonder ‘what if,’ so it wasn’t wasted time since now I know how things would turn out. And hey, you can’t take money with ya when you go!” Reframing possible failure helps you have the courage to go for your goals head-on.
The Grace Of Saying “No”
As a natural-born “people-pleaser,” I HATE saying no to people. I feel I am letting them down and will be perceived as lazy or unreliable. Saying no is necessary though to live out our most fulfilled lives. You can’t live for everybody else’s needs. I you don’t put yourself first then nobody else will. Remember that saying “no” to one thing is really saying “yes” to something else that’s more important to you. This can be truly painful at first, but once you get the hang of it you will feel empowered and in charge of your life again.
The Freedom That Comes With Facing Your Fears
As I said earlier, fear can be so powerful that it stops you dead in your tracks. To face your fears, think of fear as a form of energy. Energy that you can turn into motivation to tackle the pursuits you want. It is also an opportunity to muster up the courage (and I promise you’ve got it in ya!) to march forward towards your goals. When we face our fears, our confidence is increased. When we are more confident, we are more persistent with our goals. When we are working towards and achieving our goals, we are living a fuller, happier life. Plus, it will feel SO good to prove all the nah-sayers wrong!
Facing fear is no easy task, but with consistency and persistency you will get better at it. There is so much freedom is the word “no,” and in facing these fears head-on. Never let the fear of other’s opinions keep you from doing what you love. It is your one life that you have to live, tread on and let nothing stand in your way.